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Nippon Suisan Foods Segment Marks 10% Sales Increase

April 15, 2009

The division of room temperature foods of Nippon Suisan registered a sales result of 110 percent over the last year for the fiscal term ending March 2009. Sales of canned products did not show any growth, but both jarred and retort products exhibited dramatic increases, 146 and 180 percent respectively.

A product of salmon flakes, whose TV commercial was aired last September, was a major contributor to the sales rise. As soon as the commercial hit the air, the product name permeated through both distributors and consumers; Hiroyuki Okamoto, a Division Chief of room temperature foods, made a comment: "This product has been continuously showing such a good move since September."

In retort products, the company released a new category of "Curry Pot"; after the advent of the new category, other companies attempted to generate a similar product. However, Nissui successfully differentiated its product with collaboration with "Nabe Bun," a hot pot specialty restaurant in Tokyo. By releasing its series, "Tantan Nabe" and "Tonyu Nabe," the company did not allow other companies to successfully compete in the market.

In the new fiscal year, the company aims for further sales growths of retort and jarred products as well as for sales improvement of canned foods. The company's goal of sales in canned products is 103 percent over the previous year.

The original article was published on April 15, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

Nippon Suisan Posts Net Loss of \17.5 B. For Fiscal Year Ending March 2009

April 14, 2009

Nippon Suisan made revisions on its business forecast for the fiscal year ending March 2009 on April 13, 2009.

The company revised downward the original consolidated sales estimate of \500 billion to \495 billion; operating profit of \6 billion to \2 billion; ordinary earnings of \0 to ordinary deficit of \3.5 billion; and net loss of \11 billion to \17.5 billion.

As a single entity, the company altered the original sales projection of \326 billion to \324 billion; operating profit of \4.3 billion to operating loss of \1.1 billon; ordinary gain of \6.8 billion to \800 million; and net income of \4.8 billion to net deficit of \3 billion.

In Seafood Business, declines in sales volumes of surimi, pollack roe, salmon, and trout, which were experienced after the turn of the year, and plummets in prices were the contributing factors. A loss on year-end revaluation of inventories amounted to about \2.8 billion.

The Food Business took a delayed action to pass the increasing raw material costs onto prices. Fine Chemicals Business also indicated sales decreases in raw medical materials and health conscious foods. As a result of civil rehabilitation proceedings by Hakata Maruki, Nisisyo, a subsidiary, posted an allowance for bad debt of an affiliated company as an extraordinary loss of \2.6 billion.

The consolidated results were negatively affected by a King & Prince Seafood's slump and approximately 4.6 billion impairment loss of fixed assets, such as plants of Chilean salmon farm business, owing to the aftermath of fish diseases.

In addition, the company announced that there would be no change in the estimate of the year-end dividend of \5 (a projected annual dividend of \10).

The original article was published on April 14, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

Kyoshu Chuo-Uoichi Holds Kick-Off Party

April 10, 2009

Maruha-Nichio Group's wholesale company unit, Kumamoto-Uo (President Kenji Inoue) and Kagoshima-Uoichi (President Micho Kawanaka), merged on April 1; the merger created a new company, "Kyushu Chuo-Uoichi Co. Ltd." Employees, board members and officers of the new company attended a kick-off party held in Kumamoto City, confirming everyone's determination.

Maruha-Nichiro HD President Yuji Igarashi, Maruha-Nichiro Suisan President Shigeru Ito, Daito Gyorui President Yoichi Imamura, who represented the group's wholesale unit, Fukuokaken Uoichiba President Togami, and JF Kagoshima Fisheries Cooperative Chairman Shinsaku Ueno, among others, showed up at the party. A new company logo was also released.

The company is presided over by President Inoue and Vice President Kawanaka. A total of 152 people; six board members, three corporate officers, 58 from Kumamoto, 54 from Kagoshima, and 40 temporary workers, are part of this new business structure. Its capital is \90 million and gross assets amount to approximately 4 billion. For the fiscal year ending March 2010, sales of \25.2 billion and ordinary profit of \200 million are forecasted.

With its headquarters in Kumamoto Prefecture, its three front offices of Market, Operation, and Management will promote community-based business. Streamlining and cost reductions will be carried out by the newly established Service Office, which is responsible for late night work, delivery, and receipt, disposition, load weight check, and bookkeeping.

President Inoue said, "This is an alliance stretching over 200 km; operation of a bullet train line will commence in two years, enabling us to communicate more easily. By utilizing a computer system, we hope to effectively administer the management system, vertical management by the offices and horizontal management by the Market Office."

Maruha-Nichiro HD President Igarashi made the following comment: "Wholesale business is now facing a dramatic turning point; the stronger the adverse wind becomes, the more opportunities for great innovations will be presented. The new business operation covering the Central and Southern Kyushu is powerful ammunition. By making the best of a pair, Kagoshima's goods collecting power as a local producer market and Kumamoto as a consuming market, I expect to witness the synergetic effect."

Daito Gyorui President Imamura also shared his expectation of the new business entity: "The merger isn't a goal, but the means. During the business operations, there will be walls to climb over, however, I hope the company will bravely accept them as a challenge to reach a bigger goal."

The original article was published on April 10, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

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