Jan. 31, 2018
Okinawa Tourist Service Inc.
Sumitomo Corporation Kyushu Co., Ltd.
e-SHARE Ishigaki Co., Ltd
Strategic partnership concluded to support electric scooter sharing service in Ishigaki City
Okinawa Tourist Service Inc. (Head Office: Naha City, Okinawa Prefecture; Chairman and Chief Executive Officer: Yoshikazu Higashi; hereinafter, “Okinawa Tourist”) and Sumitomo Corporation (Head Office: Chuo-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director, President and Chief Executive Officer: Kuniharu Nakamura) have concluded a strategic partnership on supporting a sharing service for Gogoro electric smartscooters with swappable batteries and recharging stations for these batteries (hereinafter, “GO SHARE”; Note 1) to be operated by e-SHARE Ishigaki Co., Ltd. (Head Office: Ishigaki City, Okinawa Prefecture; CEO
Yoshiyuki Takahashi; hereinafter, “e-SHARE Ishigaki”), a wholly-owned consolidated subsidiary of Sumitomo Corporation.
Ishigaki Island boasts what is regarded as the largest blue coral community in the Northern Hemisphere as well as Sekisei Lagoon, one of Japan’s largest lagoons. Its beautiful landscapes draw 1.24 million tourists annually (2016 figure; 2017 estimate: 1.35 million), and this has given rise to a tourism industry that constitutes the economic core of the Yaeyama Islands. At the same time, the movement of tourists and the increase in the local population has led to greater traffic, and it is essential to maintain this beautiful island’s lifestyle and natural appeal while ensuring convenience for tourists and local residents.
Okinawa Tourist will provide operational assistance for GO SHARE on Ishigaki Island, where this service will be launched on February 5 by Sumitomo Corporation and Ishigaki City. Specifically, it will assign personnel to e-SHARE Ishigaki, GO SHARE’s operator, and in cooperation with local companies will be providing customer service operations, equipment maintenance and inspection, and tour planning and other operational support for GO SHARE. In future, Sumitomo Corporation Kyushu Co., Ltd. (Head Office: Fukuoka City, Fukuoka Prefecture; President and Director: Tsuneaki Maeda), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sumitomo Corporation, plans to dispatch its own personnel to e-SHARE Ishigaki and begin offering support, especially in the planning required for the business activities of e-SHARE and Okinawa Tourist.
Okinawa Tourist will this year have been in business for a full 60 years. Since its founding in 1958, it has worked to be a company deemed vital to society in line with its slogan of “Keeping our roots locally, reaching out to the world.” Using these electric scooters from the Taiwanese manufacturer Gogoro in their first appearance in Japan (on Ishigaki Island), the company will form a strategic partnership with Sumitomo Corporation to begin running a sharing service on Ishigaki Island. Aiming to become a century-old global company, Okinawa Tourist will strive to “ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all,” one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) declared by the United Nations General Assembly.
Sumitomo Corporation will help conserve Ishigaki City’s world-class natural environment through GO SHARE, install disaster preparedness centers combining naturally-generated energy and cutting-edge technology to support the lives of local residents, and discover/cultivate attractive tourism resources. It will also strive to implement “smart city” and other next-generation energy service initiatives, promote co-existence with the global environment, and contribute to the development of communities and industry.
(Note 1) GO SHARE is the name of a sharing service utilizing Gogoro electric smartscooters with swappable batteries and recharging stations for these batteries to be operated by e-SHARE Ishigaki. To meet a broad range of needs by lending these smartscooters to tourists, local residents and companies on Ishigaki Island, this service will begin with a fleet of 100 smartscooters, with this number to be increased as needed. An assortment of fee plans – including hourly rates for short-term visitors and local residents and daily or monthly rates for medium- to long-term visitors and companies – will be made available to provide a convenient means of transport on Ishigaki Island.
■Gogoro electric scooters with swappable batteries next to recharging station for swappable batteries
■Sumitomo Corporation’s Material Issues
Sumitomo Corporation Group positions “Six Material Issues to Achieve Sustainable Growth with Society” as an important factor in developing business strategies and in the decision-making process for individual businesses. Going forward, we will pursue sustainable growth by resolving these issues through our business activities. This Project especially contributes to “Achieving Harmony with the Global Environment” “the Development of Local Communities and Industries” and “Establishing a Foundation for Comfortable and Enriching Lifestyles”.
Corporate Communications Department,