Governance: Risk Management

Basic Concepts

The KOKUYO Group took the opportunity of the integration in 2015 to establish an organization and started taking steps to promote risk management. The aim of this activity is to establish a risk management circle from the Group’s point of view. First, we started with recognizing what kind of risk exists in the entire KOKUYO Group, and considered policies for prioritization and measures from a perspective of what is best for the Group as a whole, and then promoted these measures. We will clarify the particularly important themes or themes related to the entire organization, and aim to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of risk management by advancing the activity across the entire Group.

Systems

Risk Management Promotion Structure
We have established a Risk Management Committee as a committee to advise the President. The purpose of this committee is to promote risk management to appropriately control (avoid, reduce, transfer and accept) the impact on management by comprehensively grasping and evaluating various risks involved in corporate group management.
This Risk Management Committee serves as the hub to promote risk management activities in which management and frontline workers come together as one. Through this, we are aiming to minimize risks relating to the failure to achieve targets and reputation as a company due to unforeseen circumstances and risks in which employees become entangled as the parties concerned or involved parties.
The Risk Management Committee meets periodically every quarter during normal times to centrally manage risk events that have occurred in the group. Together with this, the committee continuously operates a risk management system (PDCA cycle) to check recurrence prevention measures and to monitor plans to deal with serious risks.
Initiatives Regarding Management of Intellectual Property Rights
As one of the strategies to differentiate ourselves from competitors, the KOKUYO Group promotes the following initiatives to encourage the acquisition of intellectual property rights, and at the same time, to respect intellectual property rights of others:
  1. Management and operational structure of intellectual property rights
    The KOKUYO Group aims to standardize and centralize utilization and strategies for intellectual property rights by controlling operations related to the intellectual property rights of subsidiaries and affiliated companies in Japan and overseas centrally within the intellectual property rights group of the legal department.

    The group monitors the products of our competitors on a daily basis for the acquisition of rights in inventions, design, and trademarks. It also executes thorough preliminary surveys to prevent a violation of the intellectual property rights of others, and protects our intellectual property rights. In addition, in cases where there is a conflict with competitors, the group responds to such a situation through cooperation with the management by taking a rapid and optimal approach for resolution.

  2. Protection and legal compliance of intellectual property rights
    The KOKUYO Group Code of Conduct stipulates that we respect the intellectual property rights of others while the intellectual property group establishes and operates the system for research, analysis, and close investigation to prevent and avoid the violation of rights held by others. In addition, awareness-raising activities for respecting the intellectual property rights of others and improving awareness of legal compliance are conducted for development departments through training as the necessity arises and as part of daily work.

  3. Promotion of creation and utilization of intellectual property rights
    The intellectual property group and development departments work closely from the early stage of development to increase the superiority of the products in the market and focus on creating and discovering inventions that contribute to differentiation from competitors’ products. We also aim to adhere to Sec. 35 of the Patents Act and establish an incentive system for employee invention as an internal rule, with the aim of increasing customer satisfaction and encouraging inventions that strengthen the Group’s development.
Initiatives Regarding Information Security
The KOKUYO Group undertakes the establishment of an information security management system, adherence with relevant laws and regulations, and safety management of confidential information (customer information, personal information, etc.) in our possession obtained as part of our business.
  1. Laws and ordinances regarding information security and other standards are adhered to.
  2. Personal information is managed according to the Personal Information Protection Policy defined by the KOKUYO Group.
  3. Appropriate safety measures are taken in order to prevent unauthorized access to information assets, as well as loss, falsification and leakage, etc. of information assets.
  4. Regulations and rules regarding the management and use of information assets are formulated and revised, and education is continually conducted to employees about these regulations and rules.
  5. Inspections and improvements are continually conducted on the management system and initiatives related to information security.

Business Continuity Planning

We have developed a business continuity plan, which we continually review and revise as part of a business continuity planning lifecycle. The plan includes measures for maintaining a stable supply of goods when an emergency disrupts operations in our plants or offices. Mindful of how severely businesses can be affected by the increasingly prevalent catastrophic events such as earthquakes, extreme storms, flooding, fires, and infectious disease, we have reaffirmed the importance of getting the initial responses right and minimizing the damage from such calamities. Our plan outlines what initial responses to take, and how to follow them up, in different kinds of disaster/emergency scenarios (including a state of emergency). Through such planning, we aim to go further in ensuring that every employee will act swiftly and safely in an emergency to safeguard human life.

Initiatives in 2021

Workshop on Business Continuity Planning 2021 for Stationery Businesses
Employees involved in the stationery business attend an annual workshop on business continuity planning. The workshop is organized by the BCP Promotion Committee, which has members from seven business units under the Stationery Business Division. This time, in addition to the committee members, 11 employees from the General Affairs Department and KOKUYO Marketing Co., Ltd. participated as observers. That turned it into a training session for the whole business beyond organizational boundaries. We held the event in two parts this time. In the first part, the participants reconfirmed the BCP and shared the history of incidents over the past year. In the second part, we held a workshop on the theme of substitute delivery. Substitute delivery means that, if the delivery functions of a distribution warehouse stop, a warehouse at another base will substitute for those functions. We held walk-through training on the substitute delivery procedures manual in this workshop. The participants confirmed the procedures again in order from the beginning. That allowed them to identify issues and to align their standpoints. There were discussions that led to updates to the BCP.