Ask IR Officers!
Here is a real-time report of the frequently asked questions during IR activities.
Nov. 07.2019 19:34
What are the financial results of the 1st Half (Apr.-Sept. 2019) announced today, November 7?
With continuing steady demand, as in the first quarter we are reporting sales and operating profit almost in line with our projection of the beginning of the fiscal year, although exchange-rate fluctuation reduced pretax and other profit figures. Our well balanced product portfolio for industry, catering to a broad range of demand in private-sector and infrastructure equipment investment in Japan and North America, powered our earnings despite persistent market uncertainty through the year. In China, rising workplace awareness about safety and quality helped us seize demand in performing industries and build market share. Pretax and other profits were below our initial projections due to exchange losses.
Nov. 07.2019 19:34
You have revised your projected results for the entire fiscal year. What are the factors behind this?
We made the revisions considering a softening economic trend worldwide and current strength of the yen. We plan to pay dividends as projected for the second half. More details at https://kito.com/ir/library
Oct. 17.2019 10:53
Tell us about Kito’s European operations.
Kito established its first European sales base in 2006. As a latecomer to this major international market, with its many competitors, we had to build out our product lines while raising the profile of the Kito brand there. To be a provider of one-stop solutions in materials-handling, from core hoist products to cranes and accessories, we have been adding local firms with strengths in these areas to the Group since 2016. That effort has built a strong foundation in terms of products and customer service, lately demonstrating new synergy with our four European subsidiaries. Taking advantage of these strengths, we are enhancing our European operations.
Sep. 30.2019 10:21
Will the October 1 increase in the consumption tax in Japan affect your operations?
At the moment we do not expect any last-minute surge in purchasing to avoid higher tax, so we do not project a demand dip on the rebound that would otherwise follow. The same was true with the previous increases in 1997 and 2014. This is because most of our customers are corporations, and consumers have only limited influence on our operations.
Sep. 13.2019 10:48
Why are machinery makers generally reluctant to enter the hoist market?
The hoist and crane market is a relatively small-niche market that carries the challenge of continuously supplying products that guarantee safety. That sets the bar high for outsiders to enter. Kito manufacturing is marked by a high ratio of in-house work in a comprehensive production process that ranges from hoist design to development, testing, manufacturing of chain and other core parts, and final assembly. By assuring the safety and durability of our products and parts from the design stage, we win customer trust.
Aug. 28.2019 12:48
I saw your press release on the new 1 ton CX manual chain hoist. Tell us about the features of this product.
The CX is a series of light, compact manual chain hoists. The new 1 ton model is very small and one of the lightest in Japan in its class, so it's easy to carry and install in high or narrow spaces. As the model broadens the application of hoists across the industrial spectrum, making transportation and operations easier, we hope to welcome new kinds of users. The complete line, including 250kg, 500kg and 1 ton CX hoists, will be widely available abroad as well as in Japan. More details at https://kito.com/story_en/story_id=4683
Aug. 27.2019 14:32
Tell us about the core industries of Kito end users.
Supplying durable and safe hoists and cranes, Kito fulfills universal needs in all industries handling heavy loads for a broad range of purposes, from private-sector equipment to public infrastructure. In recent years we have introduced our products to new sectors, including renewable energy and entertainment. Our large and diverse product portfolio assures us stable growth over the long term without depending on any specific industries or regions.
Aug. 07.2019 11:30
Are Kito's operations in China being influenced by trade conflict between the US and China?
While many machine manufacturers are being negatively affected by the US-China trade conflict, Kito's operations in China have been getting even better. Our business serves domestic demand, producing locally for local consumption, so we are not directly affected by exports from China to the US or the US tariff policy there. Due to the growing Chinese trend to value safety and quality, market share for Kito products, known for high quality and high safety, has been growing recently.
Aug. 06.2019 16:43
Today, August 6 in Japan, Kito announced its financial results for the first quarter of fiscal 2019 (April-June 2019). How were they?
Demand was strong in all regions, and we made the results as planned. First-quarter sales this year were smaller than those for Q1 2018 because in that quarter we booked about 700M yen in sales of crane systems in South Korea. Except for that effect in Asia, sales have been good in all regions since last fiscal year. We raised gross margin by cutting costs and a better product mix. Behind the lower operating profit is a change in the accounting schedule. More details at https://kito.com/ir/library
Jul. 01.2019 17:27
When will you make your financial results announcement of FY2019-Q1?
We plan to announce next financial results at 15:00 (JST) on August 6. We will disclose a tanshin report with explanatory slides in Japanese and English simultaneously.
Jun. 14.2019 10:59
While projecting another year of record-high sales and profit for fiscal 2019 overall, why are you predicting year-on-year decreases in both sales and profit for the first half, April to September?
We are projecting those decreases because of unusually high sales and profit due to special factors in the first half of fiscal 2018, and the corresponding figures for the first half of this year will be lower by comparison. The first special factor was the effect of the new IT infrastructure, which caused a temporary production glitch in fiscal 2017 and higher-than-usual figures for order balance and plant operation rates in the first half of fiscal 2018. Another special factor was a major crane project in South Korea, which was recorded in the first half of 2018. Demand remains strong, however, so we can project year-on-year growth in both sales and profit for fiscal 2019 overall.
May. 21.2019 19:08
What happened in the fiscal 2018 yearend financial briefing?
In the briefing we outlined our results for FY2018, which ended in March with all-time-high sales and profit, our plan to increase sales and profit in FY2019, and our progress with the medium-term business plan. In the Q&A session that followed, we took questions about demand trends in Japan, the US and China, industries with current growth potential, and Kito's direction and initiatives. The briefing is available for viewing via video streaming at https://kito.com/ir/library/presentation
May. 13.2019 16:43
We understand that Kito is projecting growth in both sales and profit for the fiscal year ending March 2020.
With continuing brisk demand, we expect to beat the records for sales and profit achieved in the previous fiscal year. In Japan and North America we see demand related to investment in private-sector equipment and public infrastructure remain strong. We work on building market share further in China, where Kito's high product quality is increasingly appreciated as safety-awareness rises. To meet strong demand in markets around the world, we are building out our global production and supply system and improving supply chains by transferring some production to our US and Asia bases. At home we are pushing forward with reforms in production processes at the Yamanashi Plant. More details at https://kito.com/ir/library
May. 13.2019 16:36
Tell us about Kito's financial results for the year ended March 2019, which you announced on May 13, today.
We made record-high sales and profit for the year due to globally strong demand related to equipment investment. In Japan and North America, demand related to infrastructure propelled our business forward and private-sector investment remained strong. Production growth through the year in response to strong demand contributed to profits. Joint effort with two new European subsidiaries made products more competitive. More details at https://kito.com/ir/library
Apr. 03.2019 15:29
When will you make your financial results announcement of FY2018 ended March 2019?
We plan to announce full year financial results at 15:00 (JST) on Monday 13, May. We will disclose a tanshin report with explanatory slides in Japanese and English simultaneously. We also plan to have video of the financial briefing a few days later, in both languages.
Apr. 03.2019 15:10
Why does Kito have its main plant in Yamanashi Prefecture?
Kito was founded in Tokyo's Omori district in 1932, and moved to Kawasaki during the war. With the steady expansion of residential housing in the neighborhood, the company found it difficult to increase its production capacity, so in 1983 built its main plant in the current location in Yamanashi Prefecture. It chose Yamanashi for its access to the Chuo expressway, which had just opened for east-west connections to Tokyo area, and a planned southbound expressway toward Pacific Ocean. Its large campus supports comprehensive operations, from raw material supply to parts production, product assembly and final testing. In-house production of the key parts on which our products depend for safety and durability results in high quality and value for our customers.
Mar. 11.2019 15:00
Private-sector equipment investment seems to be slowing. Does that affect our performance?
As we noted in the December 6 Q&A column, Kito end-users are not limited to industries related to private-sector equipment investment. Nearly half of demand is related to public investment in construction, civil engineering, infrastructure and the like. This kind of demand is rising, particularly in construction to revamp aging infrastructure and recover from disaster. Our customer base is broad, encompassing various industries, so Kito is not susceptible to a demand trend in any industrial sector.
Mar. 06.2019 17:34
Tell us about US operations.
There are roughly two: Sales of hoists made in Japan, and production and sales of chain. The hoist operation began in earnest in 1990, when Kito entered the US market, while the chain operation began in 2014 with the local firm that joined our group that year. Currently our hoist chain is mostly produced at the Yamanashi Plant, we partially adopt US-made chain in our hoists. We are improving our supply chain by enhancing the link between the US hoist and chain operations.
Feb. 07.2019 17:45
Please summarize the business result for the FY 2018 3rd Quarter ended December 31, 2018.
We have been expanding production since the end of the last fiscal year, responding to demand related to private-sector equipment investment and expansion of infrastructure upgrades, mainly in Japan and the US. Even within China, where slowing markets are a concern, targeted domestic industries are generally doing well, allowing year-on-year growth in both sales and profit for the Group as a whole. Please refer to https://kito.com/ir/irnews for more details.
Jan. 09.2019 13:17
When will you make your financial results announcement of FY2018-Q3?
We plan to announce next financial results at 15:00 (JST) on February 7. We will disclose a tanshin report with explanatory slides in Japanese and English simultaneously.
Dec. 28.2018 11:02
I understand that production was temporarily slowed last year due to problems with the full replacement of IT infrastructure. How has production been since then?
We completely replaced our IT infrastructure in July 2017. Production and shipments were affected immediately after the new system began operating. Our across-the-board effort to get up to speed led to a new 27-year record high for monthly production volume in March 2018. We are continuing to produce at high levels to meet brisk current demand both at home and abroad.
Dec. 06.2018 15:31
Are your order and business trends different from those of machine-tool makers?
Our main business, hoist products can be roughly divided into two groups. Electric products are used mainly in the permanent workplaces of manufacturers and the like, where demand is based in private-sector equipment investment. Manual products are mainly used in temporary workplaces for construction, civil engineering, infrastructure, resource excavation and the like. Demand for electric hoists tends to track a little behind trends in machine-tool orders, because they are used not only on production lines but for wider purposes, like transportation and maintenance of production equipment. Manual hoists are less affected by trends in any specific industry, as they draw a broad range of demand in both public and private sectors.
Nov. 14.2018 17:18
Please summarize the business result for the FY 2018 2nd Quarter ended September 30, 2018.
As a result of high level of production in response to brisk demand, continuing from the previous fiscal year, sales and profit have grown year-on-year. Sales and operating income hit a record high for the 1st half of a fiscal year. We revised full year consolidated forecast upwardly on November 1, projecting a robust demand trend in third quarter and onward. Please refer to https://kito.com/ir/irnews?archive=2018 for more details.