Japanese Tech Stock Weekly Update

by: IRG Ltd

The following is excerpted from IRG's weekly stock report:


Online brokerage kabu.com Securities Co. disclosed its plan to lower its fees for margin trading on Oct. 1, with the reduction almost halving fees for trading value worth up to 500,000 yen (US$4,000). The company said the reduction is aimed at making margin trading more accessible to individual investors as well as benefiting clients who trade large volumes through margin trading. At present, the firm bundles margin buying and selling as one transaction, but plans to charge separately for them.

Mixi Inc., a Japanese Internet social networking service operator, said it has received approval to list on the Tokyo Stock Exchange's Mothers market. The company said a total of 6,600 shares will be offered to the public in its initial public offering. Of those, 4,500 are newly issued shares and 2,100 are shares currently held in private. The company is planning a public offering of an additional 500 new shares in the event of exceptional demand. The company announced it will offer all the shares through the book-building method. The company expects to net 6.9 billion yen (US$59.5 million) from the IPO. For the current fiscal year through March, the company forecasts a parent pretax profit of 1.7 billion yen (US$14.6 million), a net profit of 986 million yen (US$8.5 million), and revenue of 4.7 billion yen (US$40.5 million). Last fiscal year, the company posted a parent pretax profit of 912 million yen (US$7.8 million), a net profit of 576 million yen (US$5 million), and revenue of 1.8 billion yen (US$15.5 million). Daiwa Securities SMBC is the lead underwriter of the offer.

Internet service operator Netage Group Inc. said it has set a premarket price of 600,000 yen (US$5,000) a share for its initial public offering of 3,500 common shares. The company's shares begin trading on the Tokyo Stock Exchange's Mothers market on Aug. 30. The premarket price is based on the results of the company's book-building exercise.


KDDI Corp. disclosed its plans to offer mobile phones made by Sharp Corp. (OTCPK:SHCAY) that would allow customers to watch digital television broadcasts. The device is seen as providing competition to a product already offered by Softbank Corp. (OTCPK:SFTBF). The handset will adopt Sharp's AQUOS brand technology that is used for the consumer electronic maker's flat-panel televisions. Japanese operators have been moving to respond to strong demand for TV-capable handsets since the launch of wireless digital broadcasts in April. Such services are also offered in South Korea. Softbank, which earlier this year bought Vodafone Group Plc's (NASDAQ:VOD) Japan-unit, has been selling AQUOS phones since May.

Qualcomm Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) announced its plan to deploy a technology that can broadcast video to mobile phones in Japan by 2008. The new Qualcomm service, called MediaFLO, will let viewers watch live streaming and also download music videos, news programs and sports clips. The U.S.-based Qualcomm said it is spending US$800 million on the technology and plans to launch the service with Verizon Wireless, a venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone Group Plc.