CEO Message


We will advance the “Pursuit of Quality” with unwavering resolve. We are determined to deliver value that is unique to the NAGASE Group to society.

CEO Message


We will advance the “Pursuit of Quality” with unwavering resolve. We are determined to deliver value that is unique to the NAGASE Group to society.


I would like to express my sympathies to those who were affected by the current COVID-19 pandemic.

I would also like to express my heartfelt gratitude to all medical workers who are working hard on providing treatment.

We Will Engage in the “Pursuit of Quality” by Leveraging Our Current Strengths and a Sustainability Perspective

Deepen the “Pursuit of Quality,” Without Resting on Our Laurels

I’m pleased to report that we delivered solid results in the first year of the medium-term management plan ACE 2.0, which embraces the “Pursuit of Quality.”

In fiscal 2021, we faced a challenging earnings environment mainly because of factors such as the impact of the semiconductor shortage and logistics disruptions, as well as surging raw materials prices. Even in this challenging business environment, the NAGASE Group met its supply obligations as a key distributor. We retained and enhanced customer trust by helping to maintain supply chains in relevant industries.

“If we ask NAGASE, they will come through for us.” I can confidently state that this type of feedback from our customers reflects the true strength of the NAGASE Group. I believe it is one of the reasons we have increased our market share in a variety of fields. Consequently, our results have grown, resulting in higher earnings across all of our segments. We delivered record-high earnings at all profit levels, from gross profit on down. Automobile, resins, electronics-related and food-related businesses performed particularly well.

That said, our analysis shows that our recent strong results were partly attributable to a tailwind from the impact of market conditions, such as soaring materials prices. While closely monitoring future market conditions, we will continue to expand in areas where we are performing well to achieve robust growth unaffected by market conditions.

We are still only halfway to achieving the “Pursuit of Quality” laid out in ACE 2.0. Without becoming complacent with our strong results, we have strengthened our resolve by reminding ourselves of the importance of steadily implementing the plan’s measures. Of course, we delivered major achievements in the first year of working on the “Pursuit of Quality.” We made steady progress on improving efficiency in areas such as replacing assets in our business portfolio. We invested in outstanding technologies such as new materials development, and in startups with expertise in fields where new businesses are expected to emerge. Employees’ mindsets have also started to shift dramatically. We have undoubtedly started to move forward.

Meanwhile, in terms of recent issues, supply chain disruptions are expected to persist for some time. We will continue to closely monitor developments closely as we work to maintain supply chains.

Awareness of the External Environment Surrounding NAGASE’s Businesses

We believe that the current business environment has not changed significantly since the development of ACE 2.0. The change in the situation in Ukraine, on the other hand, was unexpected. In the face of geopolitical risks, economic activities have become powerless. In response to the issue of Russian energy supplies, our relevant policies have also been drastically altered.

NAGASE does not always do a lot of work that is directly related to energy. However, soaring prices could reduce consumer purchasing sentiment for consumer goods in the future, so we must keep a close eye on trends, particularly in the Life & Healthcare segment. Another source of concern is rising energy costs in the NAGASE Group’s manufacturing.

We are also keeping a close eye on events in China. The world relies heavily on China for goods such as pharmaceuticals and food. Against this backdrop, rising tensions between the U.S. and China and Taiwan and China could have an impact on all of NAGASE’s businesses—an impact that we would be unable to avoid. To prepare for this risk, we have started to consider diversifying our sourcing activities. Other issues include extended shipping congestion and strikes on North America’s West Coast, as well as the 2024 problem* in Japan. The NAGASE Group intends to address these issues and advance the “Pursuit of Quality” by leveraging its strengths as a trading company and its sustainability perspective.

* The 2024 problem refers to various issues that will arise as a result of the Act on the Arrangement of Related Acts to Promote Work Style Reform imposing upper limits on overtime work hours for motor vehicle driving services and other rules beginning in April 2024.


Paving the Way for the Future Through Both Focus Businesses and Core Businesses

The external environment is undergoing rapid changes as described above. Nonetheless, we have a number of highly promising businesses that are expected to drive the NAGASE Group’s growth.

The bio-related business is one that we are most excited about for future business expansion. The three companies, NAGASE & CO., LTD., Nagase ChemteX Corporation, and Hayashibara Co., Ltd. each work on biotechnology research and development at the NAGASE Group. We have consolidated their activities on a single platform and are applying biotechnologies to a wide range of fields. We expect that many accomplishments will result from these activities during the time period covered by ACE 2.0.

Next is the semiconductor business. Electronic component demand is increasing in a variety of industries, including automobiles, and is expected to rise further in the future. The NAGASE Group carries many high-performance materials used as process materials in semiconductors, so this is a major plus. Going forward, we will work to share information and promote collaboration throughout the supply chain by establishing an organization that spans the whole Group.

With increased health consciousness around the world, we are also excited about the future of the food ingredients business related to nutrition. As a result of the acquisition of the Prinova Group LLC, the NAGASE Group already has a certain amount of market share, which adds to our expectations for this business. Furthermore, we have set our sights on accelerating initiatives in the Southeast Asia region, and expanding through capital investments or M&A.

Our proactive investments in new businesses in these fields have started to generate current returns, and I expect that they will become key drivers of the NAGASE Group. Of course, the NAGASE Group has more than just these types of focus businesses. It also has core businesses, such as the chemicals and resins businesses. These businesses continue to be NAGASE’s breadwinners. We will continue to advance the “Pursuit of Quality,” not just business volume, in our core businesses by incorporating the element of sustainability.

Furthermore, I have high expectations for environmental businesses further in the future. We are leveraging the NAGASE Group’s diverse spectrum of technological capabilities to contribute to environmental improvement in a variety of ways, including carbon neutrality. For example, to promote carbon neutrality in the chemicals industry, we are working to develop business in collaboration with Zeroboard, Inc, which has developed cloud services for computing and visualizing greenhouse gases (GHGs). This service provides proposals on initiatives to reduce GHG emissions, encompassing not only Scope 1 and 2 emissions, but also Scope 3 emissions, and we will continue to pursue value that other companies cannot match. The first step will be to work on resolving customer issues. In the future, we hope that these efforts will pave the way for providing solutions that leverage new technologies.

“Delivering next.”—Pursuing Sustainability as a Business Designer

Strongly Determined to Promote Sustainability

The pursuit of sustainability is a critical theme for the NAGASE Group to grow its business and create value. We have made the framework for promoting sustainability stronger. Notably, on April 1, 2022, we changed the name of the Corporate Communication Dept. to the Corporate Sustainability Dept. and made it an organization that reports directly to the president.

My personal approach to sustainability has changed tremendously, even more so than the NAGASE Group’s stance on the subject. When I was appointed as president and the SDGs were adopted around 2015, they did not elicit the same level of interest that they do today. Even when I visited Europe and the United States, I don’t recall hearing much about the SDGs. However, from around 2018, just a few years later, the attitudes of world-famous manufacturers started to change dramatically. I was filled with a strong sense of urgency. Japan lags far behind the forward-thinking activities of companies in Europe and the United States. We must not fall behind this trend. That sense of urgency motivated me to work to spread the SDGs throughout the organization.

Based on the belief that our sustainability activities are part of the “Pursuit of Quality”, we are working to raise sustainability awareness among all NAGASE Group employees in 2022 under the “Green it!” theme. The company’s social value will surely increase if each employee takes individual ownership of our sustainability goals.

Improving employee engagement and achieving carbon neutrality have been identified as urgent issues for our sustainability activities. Two corporate projects focused on these issues were launched, and non-financial targets (KPIs) were set in ACE 2.0 following extensive discussions. We are determined to meet these targets, believing that non-financial targets (KPIs) are just as important as financial goals.

Employee engagement is, of course, essential for sustainable growth. The NAGASE Group defines engagement as the organization and its employees understanding and enhancing one another. People, in my opinion, are a company’s most important asset. What NAGASE needs going forward are human resources who are willing to take the initiative in making changes. However, what a single person can accomplish is limited. If we can foster a corporate culture that creates a process where the organization and employees enhance each other, we can energize communication beyond the boundaries of both parties, and make NAGASE a far stronger organization. First, we conducted an employee engagement survey to assess the current situation and identify issues. We will continue to promote two-way communication between the organization and employees.

Stack “Next” on Top of “Next” and Create a Sustainable Future

Over the past 1.5 years or so since 2021, we have been implementing an outward branding project with the goal of globally communicating the value that the NAGASE Group provides. To properly convey our brand’s strengths, we conducted customer and employee interviews on our universal values, such as our management philosophy and vision, as well as changes in the internal and external environment, such as the values sought by our customers. We reopened discussions on the value the Group provides and established “Delivering next.” as our new Group slogan.

“Delivering next.” is an exciting phrase with multiple meanings. The company has a long history, and all stakeholders must remain vital partners in order for the company to progress to the next stage. The phrase “Delivering next.” was chosen because it embodies our commitment and aspirations to face whatever may come next with a forward-looking mindset while resolving our current issues. I’m confident that if the NAGASE Group and its partners stack “next” on top of “next,” this will pave the way for a brighter future.

We are currently in the midst of a reform of profit structure and reform of corporate culture under ACE 2.0. We are determined not to become preoccupied with short-term results as we continue to advance the “Pursuit of Quality” into the future. Instead, we will work to become a Business Designer that Creates a Sustainable Future, which describes the “Ideal NAGASE” for 2032, our 200th anniversary, and go further beyond. Guided by our universal management philosophy, we will continue to take ambitious initiatives with an unwavering resolve and pursue sustainability to deliver value unique to the NAGASE Group to all stakeholders.



Hayashibara Co., Ltd. changed its corporate name to Nagase Viita Co., Ltd. as of April 1st, 2024.

Integrated Report 2023

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