Oki Matsumoto Representative Executive Officer & Chairman, Monex Group, Inc.
Yuko Seimei Representative Executive Officer & Chief Executive Officer, Monex Group, Inc.
Oki Matsumoto Representative Executive Officer & Chairman, Monex Group, Inc.
Yuko Seimei Representative Executive Officer & Chief Executive Officer, Monex Group, Inc.

Speak your mind: You are the one to lead the
future of Monex Group


As we celebrate the company’s 25-year anniversary, Monex Group is seeing itself changing, starting off with a
new management team with Yuko Seimei taking over the role of CEO from Oki Matsumoto. How are Seimei-san
and Matsumoto-san envisioning the future of Monex Group? Let’s follow their conversation.

Sharing the Same Values Keeps Us on the Right Track

Matsumoto: I am proud of this new chapter in the history of Monex Group with you taking over the role of CEO. I have nothing but confidence in the new management team even if we will likely see some changes in how the Group is run. I can say this because we, including you, executive members and employees, share the same values and that helps us always stay on the right track.

Seimei: What do you see as our shared values?

Matsumoto: If I may, it is about not doing anything wrong. Fundamentally, we all share moral principles and consider it more important than business performance.

Seimei: I agree that the people at Monex Group share a positive personality - no one gets jealous or boasts. Having worked for Monex Group for 15 years, I have never had an experience where someone tried to drag me down. Our goal is to demonstrate our corporate philosophy and to deliver great services to our customers. All of us at Monex are moving in the same direction, prioritizing our philosophy. This is why we do not have to compare ourselves with others to see if we are better or worse. Monex is very unique in that we see living evidence of our corporate philosophy in every corner of the organization.

Matsumoto: Philosophy does not take hold if we think of it only as words. Ever since I started this Group, I have never tolerated actions or behaviors that go against our philosophy, for example, being disrespectful to our customers or not recognizing diversity. I have always pointed out unacceptable situations and discussed how we can correct them. Continuous efforts to improve have helped us incorporate our philosophy into our organization.

Oki Matsumoto Representative Executive Officer & Chairman, Monex Group, Inc.

New Businesses Accelerate Growth
Opportunities May Presents Themselves Out of the Blue

Seimei: I am a rather practical person - I always want a clear set of goals. For me, the goal to pursue is realizing our corporate philosophy. I am fond of the philosophy we uphold and have no intention to change it. I believe there are many different ways it can be attained. Monex Group had only four members when Matsumoto-san started it. Now, we are a global company with 1,500 employees. As we pursue further growth, we need a proper organizational structure to drive productivity in line with our scale. We cannot make investments for growth unless we enhance our profitability. My biggest managerial role is deciding how to allocate resources, whether it be people or money, to improve productivity and profitability. We have tremendous opportunities and potential in Monex Group and I am committed to unlocking them by allocating our resources wisely.

Matsumoto: I am confident that you have your own way of leading Monex Group and I am here to help you in any way I can, leveraging the wisdom I have gained through many years of experience.

Seimei: I expect you to keep leading our efforts to facilitate new business enterprises. New businesses are always important - they prevent us from being too protective of what we already have. We cannot grow just by repeating what we have been doing. Rather, we need to always take on new challenges. Having said that, I also understand that it is not an easy job to come up with ideas for new enterprises, especially if you are running the day-to-day operations.

Matsumoto: You are right. Coming up with new business ideas requires a very unique attribute. An extension of an existing service is not a new business. When I proposed a new business idea to you recently, you asked me how the business is related to Monex Group. Well, the conclusion is, that enterprise has nothing to do with Monex Group as of now. Ideas coming out of the blue, however, present opportunities to create new value. Of course, we have to prove that that new enterprise benefits society.

Monex is Willing to Take Risks to Make Unique Ideas into Reality

Seimei: When you told me your reasoning behind the new business proposal, I was in a way persuaded (laugh). Well, not everyone is an entrepreneur… is entrepreneurship something you can learn and develop?

Matsumoto: Creating a new business requires an inductive approach, meaning that you need a particular set of facts or ideas to form a general principle. Anyone can do that if you understand how it works. How much information you have at hand is key. Gather and process a massive amount of information, identify what can spark innovation, and make your judgment. Making decisions based on an incomplete set of information does not work.

Seimei: On top of that, whether or not you can take a risk is also important. Innovative ideas do not automatically bring value. You need to take a risk and act on those ideas. In that sense, navigating how we take risks as a company is one of my responsibilities as management. I want to make sure that people are aware of how we prepared ourselves to take on risk and make your unique ideas a reality. My job is to ensure an environment in which everyone, peculiar or extraordinary, is accepted and encouraged to present their ideas without thinking too much about what others may think.

Matsumoto: For Monex Group’s sustainable growth, it is imperative to identify and develop talents with an entrepreneurial mindset. I am holding myself accountable for working on this theme.

Yuko Seimei Representative Executive Officer & Chief Executive Officer, Monex Group, Inc.

More Employees Have Come to Think Outside the Box

Matsumoto: I am seeing a change in the company atmosphere after you became CEO.

Seimei: "The Future Fest 2023” the other day was interesting, wasn’t it? We had an opportunity to think about our individual assets and liabilities during the “Your Life Balance Sheet” session. Many employees pointed out “being trapped with an existing set of values” as their liability. This is a great indication that an increasing number of employees agree with what you said earlier, that is, we cannot expand our horizons if we see the future as an extension of what we have been doing.

Matsumoto: I am going to scale down my role in the company. My mission moving forward is to focus on enabling you and all other employees to succeed. At the same time, I want to be more involved in external activities. With the fund I contributed to the University of Tokyo, we established an institution specializing in the study of how to reenergize and revitalize the capital markets in Japan to enhance the strength and productivity of the country. I am hoping that this effort eventually benefits individual investors, who are our customers, and that my activity helps raise the profile of Monex.

Seimei: You making an impact externally means a lot to Monex. I believe that financial services is one of a very few growing sectors in Japan. The reality, however, is that companies are trying to take market share away from each other in a very small market. This is creating a very small-scale competition. We definitely need to grow the sector itself. That is how we can grow as a company. We are counting on you, Matsumoto-san, for your leadership in energizing the industry.

Matsumoto: It is my personal commitment to helping the capital markets in Japan thrive. Positive stock market performance should boost the economy in Japan, make Japanese corporations more competitive in the global market, and bring more income and assets to people in the country. I have been involved in the capital markets for quite a long time and built close relationships with our customers. Thanks to their trust, we have grown to where we are now. I am determined to give back what I gained over the years to better the capital markets. I believe this is also how I can make a difference for the future of Monex Group.

Each One of Us Needs to Take Ownership of Monex Group’s Future

Seimei: We used to more or less follow your strong leadership and that was the very reason the company grew. Going forward, I want each one of us to break away from a “follower” mindset and take ownership in moving Monex Group. Some may drive the company as frontline leaders, while others may support our business from behind the scenes. Different people have different roles to play, depending on their competence. We want to build a workplace where all employees feel they have equal opportunities and are encouraged to lead the company, regardless of age or gender. For this, I need to visualize what I want from employees, for example, promoting the best and willing talents and empowering them to have more influence in the organization.

Matsumoto:  I would like our employees to “not read the room.” This is key when it comes to demonstrating our value in this era. “Not reading the room” does not mean doing whatever you like without seeking information. Rather, it means acquiring a sufficient amount of knowledge, and then, being assertive even when your ideas are entirely different from others. Countries and companies alike are doomed to fail when too many people go along with the crowd without having their own ideas. Monex Group should be made up of people who are capable of making judgments based on their respective beliefs.

Seimei: We all have some thoughts on the company, customers, or colleagues. Be candid and speak up, then we can naturally improve the company. Do not hesitate to come talk to me or Matsumoto-san if you want to clarify what we have in mind. I want all employees to take ownership in the growth and direction of Monex Group. This is how we translate the passion of all employees into the energy that drives the growth of the company. And this is how we become stronger and offer better value.