100 Next-Era Leaders in Asia 2015 -The region's best brightest, most promising-

Monex Group Inc.

CEO Oki Matsumoto

1963
Birthplace
Saitama
Message to young people
To be capable in your work, you have to be able to create work. I think I have an aptitude for financial services but I never thought about whether I was good at this job when I started working. I just focused on the work that was in front of me. If you aspire to become more capable, there will be no end to your work.

I am a person interested in a wide variety of things. Ever since I was a young child, I have been curious about everything. I loved going places I didn’t know with friends and we traveled as far and wide as possible. My friend and I once floated down a river on a piece of foam, but when we almost got sucked into a water intake my friend cried and we couldn’t go any further.

When I was in high school and hadn’t yet decided on my university major, I was in a class for students destined to be science majors. Back then I wanted to become a doctor or a theoretical physicist, but I realized I had the aptitude for neither so I gave up studying science and entered the Law Faculty of the University of Tokyo. When I began hunting for a job, I noticed many of my fellow students looked for work at government ministries and banks, but I chose to work for a foreign securities house.

While I was visiting the United States during university, I found it very frustrating that I couldn’t make myself understood in English. I joined a foreign company just because I thought I’d be able to learn English. I first entered Salomon Brothers Asia and later worked for Goldman Sachs. Shortly before stock trade commission fees were completely liberalized, I came up with the idea of online securities services in Japan. I proposed Goldman Sachs go into the online securities business targeting individual investors, but my proposal went nowhere. So I decided to leave Goldman to set up a company on my own. Then I got to know (former President of Sony Corp.) Nobuyuki Idei through my acquaintances and he provided a variety of support for my new business.

I think there are times when you have to make your own decision to turn right even when everyone else is saying you should turn left. Not making an error in judgment at a time like that is crucial in managing a company, and that has been no easy task.

If you climb one mountain, you realize there is another tall mountain ahead of you. After you have scaled that mountain, you will find an even taller mountain out there. You cannot see the summit of a mountain so easily. I also think we cannot expect to climb (the tallest) mountain.

Investors want to have the largest possible number of options at their disposal. I want to offer all kinds of products and information from around the world to individual investors so they will say, “If you have an account at Monex, you don’t need anything else.” I just want to keep on going so that Monex will become able to offer the world’s best financial services.

Company Profile

Name
Monex Group Inc.
Headquarters
Tokyo
2004
employees
951(Mar, 2015)
business
An online financial services provider catering to individual investors in Japan, the United States and China (Hong Kong)
url
http://www.monexgroup.jp/