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May 08, 2008

Extensive Business and Capital Venture in the Water Industry Mutual Cooperation between "Vanadium-rich Fuji-no-Yusui" Natural Water Business and Water Ionizer Business

Iwatani International Corporation
Nihon Trim Co., Ltd.

Iwatani International Corporation (headquarters: Osaka & Tokyo, President: Akiji Makino, capital: ¥20,000 million) and Nihon Trim Co., Ltd. (headquarters: Osaka, President: Shinkatsu Morisawa, capital: ¥990 million) are pleased to announce that part of the stock of Fujinoyusui Corporation, a subsidiary of Iwatani International, was transferred to Nihon Trim, and both parties have agreed to establish extensive business partnerships in the water industry to achieve mutual growth and expansion in a synergistic effect.
Iwatani has transferred 20% of all outstanding shares of its subsidiary, Fujinoyusui Corporation (headquarters: Osaka, President: Hideki Kubo, capital: ¥50 million), which is the largest producer-distributor of the gallon bottled natural water industry, to Nihon Trim, a company manufacturing and selling water ionizers, as of April 15, 2008.
This transfer of shares is the first step in the business collaboration between Iwatani International and the Iwatani Group and Nihon Trim for extensive and mutual business development.
[Outline of business venture]
  • Fujinoyusui will receive technological support from Nihon Trim to produce reduced water in order to develop a new, premium water.
  • Under the business collaboration agreement, Iwatani sells Nihon Trim's electrolyzed reduced water systems mainly through the group's major distributors nationwide and direct sales channels, aiming at annual sales of 3,000 units for the first year. This may allow Iwatani to expand its water business potential.
  • Under the business collaboration agreement, Nihon Trim transfers its expertise to Iwatani International and Iwatani Group, and expands the sales of its water ionizers, as well as participating in the delivery service of gallon bottled "vanadium-rich Fuji-no-Yusui" drinking water, and sales of premium water in Japan.
This business and capital venture of Iwatani International and Iwatani Group with Nihon Trim will produce a synergistic effect for expanding our mutual water businesses, and at the same time, form a corporate group of "water" partners to provide one-stop total service to the market, including natural water procurement, production of bottled water, home delivery of gallon bottles, leased water servers, sales of electrolyzed reduced water systems, and the development of premium water. This enables us to offer new types of water services to meet the recent needs of health-oriented consumers seeking high quality drinking water.
■Outline of Fujinoyusui Corporation
Headquarters: 2-15, Bingomachi 3-chome, Chuo-ku , Osaka 541-0051
Tel: 06-6262-5523
Fax: 06-6262-5529
Established: August 1, 2006
Capital: ¥50,000,000
President: Hideki Kubo
Type of business: Manufacture and sales of mineral water
Manufacture, sales and leasing of manual mineral water feeders
Plants: 1st Plant: 4581-4, Kamiyoshida, Fuji-Yoshida, Yamanashi 403-0005
  2nd Plant: 4878-6, Kamiyoshida Karamatsuiri, Fuji-Yoshida, Yamanashi 403-0005
■Nihon Trim Co., Ltd. (Securities code: 6788)
Headquarters: 1-8-34 Oyodonaka, Kita-ku, Osaka 531-0076
Tel: 06-6456-4600
Fax: 06-6455-3951
Established: June 12, 1982
Capital: ¥992,590,000
President: Shinkatsu Morisawa
Type of business: Manufacture, development and sales of electrolyzed reduced water systems, filter cartridges, household electrical potential treatment systems, etc.
Production and sales of bottled drinking water.
■Iwatani International Corporation (Securities code: 8088)
Headquarters: 4-8, Honmachi 3-chome, Chuo-ku, Osaka 541-0053
Tel: 06-6267-3131
Fax: 06-6267-3535
Incorporated February 2, 1945
Established: May 5, 1930
Paid-in capital: ¥20,096,430,000
President: Akiji Makino
Business area: Based on the general energy industry and centering around the LPG and industrial gas business, the scope of operation extends to daily commodities, FA systems, welding materials, welding and cutting machines, electronics, machinery, industrial materials, and agro-, bio- and food industries
<Reference>
●What is "Vanadium-rich Fuji-no-Yusui"?
"Vanadium-rich Fuji-no-Yusui" is a natural mineral water that Fujinoyusui Corporation extracts from 200m deep wells in two plants, located at a height of 950 meters at the northern base of Mt. Fuji. The water is filled in 3-gallon (11.4 liters) bottles, delivered to households and offices, and refilled in the dedicated water servers leased by the company. The raw water is filtered with four micro-filtering devices, and bottled in clean rooms without heat treatment. It is not only genuine natural water of the highest quality, but also rich in mineral — 78µg/ℓ vanadium making the water more palatable. The company's mineral water business is expanding through exclusive LPG distributors owned by the Iwatani Group, direct affiliates and other agents mainly in the Kinki, Tokyo metropolitan, and Chubu areas. Around 92,000 leased water servers are installed at present.
This water business has been attracting attention of the industry as an effective business streamlining physical distribution and an alternative in summer for the Iwatani Group whose LPG business profits mainly in winter.
●What are Nihon Trim's electrolyzed reduced water systems?
Electrolyzed reduced water is an antioxidant water rich in hydrogen, produced by electrolyzing tap water after removing chlorine and other impurities using a large filter cartridge. The electrolyzed reduced water systems of Nihon Trim are a controlled medical device specified in the Pharmaceutical Affairs Law. They are highly sophisticated systems in compliance with strict legal standards, and equipped with a set of functions for producing electrolyzed reduced water that has a stable quality. For example, proprietary technology called a "double auto-change cross-line system" (international patent) is implemented for automatically switching polarity and water passage in the electrolyte cell to prevent scales from depositing on the electrode inside the cell while water is being processed. Various advanced technologies used in the system include the switching regulator control system that adjusts to changes in water quality with automatic voltage control, and the twin safety valve integrating hot water prevention and excessive pressure prevention mechanisms.