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Review of Operations
Outline of the Business
The Brokerage Segment primarily offers support services
seller, or sometimes both), up to a maximum of “property
to clients in buying and selling real estate, with a focus on
price x 3% + ¥60,000,” in accordance with Ministry of
existing condominiums and single-family houses. We pro-
Land, Infrastructure and Transport ordinances.
vide a wide variety of services to our clients, ranging from
Brokerage is our main business, accounting for 73% of
offering comprehensive knowledge and information nec-
total revenue from operations in the year ended March
essary for them to make informed decisions, to processing
31, 2004. Our brokerage operation comprises a nation-
documents on their behalf and providing useful informa-
wide network of directly managed brokerage offices,
tion pertaining to legal, taxation and other issues related
which offer a wealth of properties in accordance with our
to the purchase or sale of real estate. In the Japanese
“Property Listing First” policy (butsumoto shugi). These
market, we brokers receive commissions from whichever
advantages enable us to provide a variety of services that
party or parties we represent (either from a buyer or a
Sumitomo Real Estate Sales Group at a Glance / Review of Operations—Brokerage
Overview of Fiscal 2004 and Future Strategies
Tokyo Metropolitan Area, the average price of existingcondominiums continued to rise year over year, while the
rate of the price decline narrowed in the overall existing
The number of transactions, value of transactions, revenue
home market. The rate of decline for property prices also
from operations, and operating income all reached record
highs, with annual growth of more than 10% for each ofthese four items.
The number of transactions increased 10.3% year over
We have cultivated a community-oriented marketing
year, to 26,953. Strong growth in the wholesale business,
approach to provide better service to our clients. We are
which boasts a higher average unit price than the retail
adding offices to our brokerage office network with the
business, supported a 15.7% year-over-year increase in
goal of increasing our market share. In line with these
the value of transactions, to ¥791,562 million, and a
strategies, we opened the following five new brokerage
10.2% year-over-year gain in revenue from operations, to
¥36,104 million. Further, since the operating income mar-gin for the wholesale business is higher than that for the
Tokyo Metropolitan Area: Shonandai, Nakayama,
retail business while the commission rate is lower, operat-
ing income for the Brokerage Segment rose 17.5% yearover year, to ¥10,397 million. As a result, the operating
income margin rose 1.8 percentage points, to 28.8%.
Our brokerage office network at the end of March 2004
consisted of 211 offices, with 117 in the Tokyo
Moving forward, the number of transactions in the existing
Metropolitan Area, 66 in the Kansai Area, and 28 in
home market is expected to show a steady increase on the
back of three factors: (1) a rising trend in the stock of pri-
In addition to these five new offices, we also undertook
vately owned homes and condominiums, seen in statistics
relocations and renewals of some existing offices. In relo-
on new housing starts, (2) growth in replacement buying
cations, our strategy is to relocate close to a train or sub-
demand associated with life-stage transitions, and (3) the
way station and on the ground floor to maximize both our
price advantage of existing homes relative to new homes.
visibility and ability to attract customers. In fiscal 2004,
In fiscal 2004, higher stock prices and improved eco-
relocations of eight existing offices and full-scale renova-
nomic sentiment sparked home-buying interest, especially
tions of four other offices had a positive effect on earnings.
among younger people, who tend to be first-time homebuy-ers, leading to a rise in the number of transactions. In the
Years ended March 31 . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Revenue from operations . . . . . . . .
Operating income . . . . . . . . . . . .
Operating income margin (%) . . . . .
Number of transactions . . . . . . . . .
Value of transactions . . . . . . . . . . .
Average unit price . . . . . . . . . . . .
Average commission rate (%) . . . . .
SUMITOMO REAL ESTATE SALES — Annual Report 2004
We are developing our wholesale business into a third
Internet-based transactions are increasing as Internet usage
source of revenue, after our housing brokerage business for
becomes more widespread in Japan. The rise in Internet-
individual clients and consignment sales of new housing in
based transactions is favorable for our business because it
the retail business. The wholesale business recorded
reduces advertising costs and improves the efficiency of
tremendous growth in fiscal 2004, with revenue from oper-
ations expanding approximately 60% year over year.
In fiscal 2004, Internet-based transactions grew approxi-
The wholesale business is handled by the Corporate
mately 30% year over year. To encourage such transac-
Brokerage Division and the Asset Management Business
tions, we have been progressively upgrading our Web site
Division. The Due Diligence Office was newly set up in
and in July 2003 launched the “My Page” service, a sys-
June 2003 under the Asset Management Solutions
tem that enables potential buyers to more efficiently search
Department of the Asset Management Business Division.
for property information. We will continue to enhance the
This led to the expansion of our brokerage solutions opera-
functions available through our Web site to increase
tions, which take advantage of the office’s real estate
appraisers and due diligence functions, and resulted incontracts for consulting projects and large brokeragedeals. Furthermore, in April 2004 the CorporateBrokerage Division set up Corporate BrokerageDepartment IV. Under this four-department system, weintend to further strengthen and enhance our wholesalebusiness.
The wholesale business is benefiting from growing
demand from sellers, such as companies wanting to dis-pose of real estate to reduce debt and to sell or liquidatereal estate ahead of the introduction of fixed asset impair-ment accounting, as well as heightened demand from buy-ers, including companies interested in buying real estatefor business or investment purposes. We will continue tofocus on the wholesale business, aiming to achieve 10%of revenue in the whole Brokerage Segment by fiscal2006.
We are enhancing the functionality of our Web site (URL: http://www.stepon.co.jp) to encourage Internet-based transactions.
Number of Brokerage Offices (at fiscal year-end)
95.3 96.3 97.3 98.3 99.3 00.3 01.3 02.3 03.3 04.3
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