To the Shareholders
Golf links the world!
Fiscal year 2018 was the final year of our 3-year mid-term business plan (2016-2018). We positioned this mid-term term plan to achieve further growth with the mindset of recreating the GDO Group from scratch. More specifically, by strengthening existing services on a full-scale basis and embarking on new and overseas businesses. We were able to achieve double-digit year-on-year sales growth, as well as net income and dividend payout goals as well.
We also faced many new challenges and had to revise parts of our plans along the way. One of the challenges was expanding our business overseas. We have faced some difficulties in the Asian markets, as well as looking for opportunities in the US. We were finally able to announce our majority acquisition of US based Golf Tec Enterprises LLC (hereinafter GTE), in order to expand our global golf presence and enter into the largest golf market in the world. This required resources as well as taking on the impact of goodwill amortization within our consolidated financials.
Therefore, we revised our fiscal year2018 guidance in July, for operating and net profits. We believe this was a crucial step for our future continued growth and diversifying our business outside of Japan. In summary, sales, operating profit and net profit were ¥26,739 million, ¥804 million and ¥380 million, respectively. Within our mid-term plan, the average annual growth rate in sales during the three-year period from 2016 to 2018 stood at 14.3%, achieving the target. However, operating income fell short of ¥850 million, due to related acquisition costs as well as missing targets in parts of our domestic Japanese businesses. We have identified areas we need to strengthen and will continue to have a clear focus on end-customer satisfaction and continue our efforts to be the No.1 global golf service company.
We have announced the initial part of our new 5 year mid-term strategic plan which started this year in 2019. We will continue to develop this plan over the next year, but the initial focus is to continue to grow our top line in sales and market share, both in Japan and the US. With the strong foundation of the GDO platform in Japan as well as the addition of the GTE business platform and the entire organization in the US, we will aim to become a global and comprehensive golf service company within the next five years.
Our fundamental corporate vision is to continue to innovate in golf and to provide more “WOW “ to all golfers. The GDO group aims to become an unrivalled provider of comprehensive golf services that enable players around the world to enjoy golf on all levels and different formats, and to pursue our corporate mission of “Golf links the world “. The GDO group will also focus on enhancing corporate value and striving to meet the expectations of investors and all customers, well into the next decade.
Nobuya “Mike” Ishizaka
President and CEO