Jan. 31, 2018
e-SHARE Ishigaki Co., Ltd.
Promoting an “Eco-Island” Initiative in Ishigaki City
Electric smartscooter sharing service to be launched
Ishigaki City (Okinawa Prefecture; Mayor: Yoshitaka Nakayama) and Sumitomo Corporation (Head Office: Chuo-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director, President and Chief Executive Officer: Kuniharu Nakamura) have been supporting efforts to make Ishigaki Island “an island seeking sustainable development through the creation of new value” in line with Ishigaki City’s vision. As a first step in that regard, e-SHARE Ishigaki Co., Ltd. (Head Office: Ishigaki City, Okinawa Prefecture; CEOYoshiyuki Takahashi; hereinafter, “e-SHARE Ishigaki”), a wholly-owned consolidated subsidiary of Sumitomo Corporation, will start a sharing service on February 5 (hereinafter, “GO SHARE”; Note 1) utilizing Gogoro electric smartscooters (100 initially) having swappable batteries as well as four replaceable battery recharging stations.
Ishigaki Island has a rich subtropical natural setting that people from around the world find appealing, and its beautiful landscapes draw 1.24 million tourists annually (2016 figure; 2017 estimate: 1.35 million); 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. In addition, concerns about tremendous wind and water damage from typhoons made more powerful by global warming have made it all the more important to ensure the availability of emergency power sources and create a safe and secure sightseeing destination.
In putting GO SHARE into action, Ishigaki City will utilize the subsidies provided by the Cabinet Office for projects that promote the revitalization of Okinawa’s remote islands in order to install renewable energy facilities. By introducing smartscooters and recharging stations and operating the service, Sumitomo Corporation and e-SHARE Ishigaki will provide tourists and local residents with an eco-friendly means of transport. Some of the recharging stations will be outfitted with solar panels, and maximum use will be made of this renewable energy, which will also be utilized as emergency power for disaster preparedness centers during disasters. The scooters offer maneuverability on poor roads and narrow tracks and serve as an effective means of mobility during disasters so, by concluding an agreement with Ishigaki City to provide smartscooters free of charge to residents and tourists during disasters via e-SHARE Ishigaki, Sumitomo Corporation will be assisting Ishigaki City in establishing a safe and secure tourist resort.
e-SHARE Ishigaki will launch the service on February 5 with a fleet of 100 smartscooters. In the next fiscal year, it will be introducing GO SHARE smartphone applications to enhance convenience, and it will be steadily adding to this fleet in response to demand. Okinawa Tourist Service Inc. (Head Office: Naha City, Okinawa Prefecture; Chairman and Chief Executive Officer: Yoshikazu Higashi) will be helping e-SHARE Ishigaki to provide this service, and Sumitomo Corporation Kyushu Co., Ltd. (Head Office: Fukuoka City, Fukuoka Prefecture; President and Director: Tsuneaki Maeda), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sumitomo Corporation, also plans to dispatch personnel to e-SHARE Ishigaki in future to offer full-scale administrative support.
Ishigaki City and Sumitomo Corporation will help conserve Ishigaki City’s world-class natural environment through GO SHARE, combining naturally-generated energy with cutting-edge technology, supporting the day-to-day lives of local residents, and discovering/fostering appealing tourism resources. They will also be undertaking a variety of efforts to implement Ishigaki City’s “Eco-Island Initiative.”
(Note 1) GO SHARE is the name of a smartscooter sharing service to be offered 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. An assortment of fee plans – including hourly rates for short-term visitors and daily or monthly rates for medium- to long-term visitors – will be made available to meet a variety of needs.
■Gogoro electric scooters with swappable batteries next to recharging station for swappable batteries
■Meeting on September 28, 2017 at Ishigaki City Hall
■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,