INTERVIEW: Japan Post Aims to Use Post Offices as "Regional Hubs"

Economy Politics

Tokyo, Jan. 17 (Jiji Press)--Japan Post Holdings Co. <6178> plans to use its nationwide network of some 24,000 post offices as regional hubs, offering administrative services on behalf of local governments in sparsely populated areas, company President Hiroya Masuda said in a recent interview.

Japan Post Holdings will also accelerate discussions with Japanese cybermall operator Rakuten Inc. <4755> to collaborate on a new financial service, in addition to cooperating in the field of logistics, according to Masuda.

"Most of what I have done (since becoming president) is fixing troubles and damage on our clients as swiftly as possible," said Masuda, who assumed the position in January last year after the previous leadership resigned over irregularities in sales of "Kampo" postal life insurance products at post offices. "This year, I will focus on the next growth strategy."

On his plans to lead the corporate group, Masuda said that he wants to avoid a situation in which Japan Post Co., the postal service group's mail and parcel delivery arm, is perceived as being maintained on earnings from the group's two financial subsidiaries--Japan Post Insurance Co. <7181> and Japan Post Bank <7182>.

The president said that he wants to utilize the strong nationwide network of post offices, "giving functions as regional hubs" to post offices in sparsely populated areas where government services often fail to reach residents.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press