From 11:30 on Friday, November 12, 2021, FIELDS CORPORATION held a financial results briefing (conference call) for H1 of the fiscal year ending March 31, 2022.
This page provides an overview of the main questions and answers (summaries) at the briefing.
[Pachinko and pachislot (hereinafter, “PS”) related]
A1: The machine has received expectations from pachinko halls in all aspects, including new chassis, specifications, and the first revamped handle mechanism in about 50 years. Thanks to the success of TV commercials broadcasted at the same time as sales, orders have exceeded expectations.
A2: The removal of pachislot machines has lagged behind that of pachinko machines, and there are still about 500,000 old-regulation machines in pachinko halls (as of the end of October). According to our group’s survey, about half of those will be new machines delivered from each manufacturer by the deadline for removal. For the remaining half, while the main focus is on replacing used machines stored by each pachinko hall, it is speculated that some pachinko halls may try to temporary block some areas of the pachinko hall.
A3: Due to the small number of regulation 6.2 machine installed in the market, it is difficult to make a definitive assessment at this time. Going forward it is expected that machines with specs unique to regulation 6.2 will gradually appear, so we first would like to look forward to their operation.
A4: We recognize that the aim of introducing smart pachinko and pachislot is to promote ecology and cost reductions. Pachinko halls require initial investment, but if all smart pachinko and pachislot take the place of all the current machines, many advantages are expected in the future, such as reducing the noise of pachinko halls and the costs of machines.
The introduction of these machines is expected to progress gradually over multiple years.
* Smart pachinko: A pachinko machine with a mechanism in which pachinko balls are built into each machine and circulated
* Smart pachislot: A pachislot machine that manages the number of medals by data and can be played without using medals
A5: We are currently in the process of exchanging opinions and conducting surveys with relevant parties. At present, however, we estimate that the impact may be minor.
A6: Since the revision of regulations in 2018, a succession of good products has appeared in response to new regulations. Considering this situation, we expect market unit sales for the fiscal year under review (FY2021) to slightly exceed the 1,600,000 units forecasted in May. The market unit sales for the next fiscal year (FY2022) is estimated at the present time, when extremely little information is available, but while there is potential to aim for 1,800,000 to 2,000,000 units, we think that it will remain in the range of 1,600,000 to 1,800,000 units, considering the risks of materials procurement, etc. due to the shortage of semiconductors.
A7: As mentioned above, while those impact on market unit sales is expected in the next fiscal year, we think there will be a difference between the forecast market unit sales by manufacturers and the procurement materials based on forecasts. We will work to make more sales with our partner manufacturers.
A8: In China, TPD’s IP (intellectual property), including Ultraman, is extremely popular, and it is recognized as an important market for TPD. For this reason, we constantly recognize country risks, including regulations imposed by the Chinese government, and continuously monitor the situation through local distributors. Currently, TPD is working diligently to disperse risks by not only hedging risks within China, but also creating pillars other than China by increasing its share of other regions.
Although some TPD’s titles in China were suspended for distribution in the internet news and other media, we have also been able to manage risk in this matter, and have not been materially affected by this issue on our group.
A9: Domestically, TPD is promoting an IP strategy of expanding its target base, and in addition to the development for the children and families that it has been working on from the past, it will expand its fans to include all-target customers, from young to adults.
In works for children and families, the Ultraman Trigger NEW GENERATION TIGA, which is currently being broadcast, has been well received, and merchandising based on this is also trending favorably. As a work that adults can also enjoy, TPD is working on the production of the movie SHIN ULTRAMAN, and is currently adjusting the release date.
The full 3DCG animations ULTRAMAN received favorable reviews, including winning first place in the “Japanese Most Viewed Animations” ranking in Netflix in 2019, and TPD plans to distribute season 2 in the spring of 2022. Animations such as SSSS.GRIDMAN and SSSS.DYNAZENON are also popular, and these merchandising are also trending steadily.
TPD is also developing its business in the digital domain, and launched “TSUBURAYA IMAGINATION”, a digital service platform as owned media, and “TSUBURAYA STORE ONLINE”, a proprietary e-commerce service. With these as a starting point, TPD will expand its digital business.
Overseas, TPD has positioned China, North America, and Asia (Taiwan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, etc.) as priority regions. TPD and Netflix has already announced the joint production of Ultraman, a movie featuring CG animations. By expanding the range of titles produced overseas, it hopes to further expand its business.
In merchandise, sales of collectors’ items are trending favorably both domestically and overseas, in addition to toys for children that have been developed from the past. Going forward, TPD will further strengthen its development of apparel and other products.