Thursday, April 01, 2021

All you want to know about Kabushikigaisha TOKIO / TOKIO Inc.

 As per my tweets and Facebook posts in the early hours of 1 April 2021, Kabushikigaisha TOKIO (株式会社TOKIO) i.e. TOKIO Inc. has begun operations by launching its official website, 2-min introductory corporate video and official Twitter page . I thought that it would be good for those who are interested in knowing more about the company and/or read some trivia related to it so here are some key points sourced from information on their website and the media. Of course, for more information, do keep a lookout on their official channels for further updates.

As a longtime TOKIO fan since 1996, I can't deny that it's a bit sad to see the changes from 5->4->3. However, just like what happened when ARASHI went on hiatus, I think the positivity out of this change actually exceeds whatever sadness I feel. In fact, in TOKIO's case, the group name, branding and the three of them still being engaged in group activities are what makes this a lot more bearable and uplifting. Looking at them smile with a vision for the future and seeing how there's so much potential for them to achieve beyond what they did as an idol group/band, I think the direction which TOKIO Inc. is heading towards might prove to be an example for future groups/artists to emulate as they reach the maturity stage of their careers.

- The official website was launched at midnight on 1 April 2021.

- The 2-min long introductory video was shot in Nihonbashi, the centre and business district of Tokyo, and Fukushima Prefecture which has long been regarded as the second hometown of TOKIO due to the amount of work they did in DASH-mura and DASH-jima for NTV's variety show "The Tetsuwan Dash!!". It features the trio walking along the street in Nihonbashi in suits (supposedly signaling a new step in life they have taken with the establishment of this company) and how they go to a forest in Fukushima to chop down a tree so as to get timber for their wooden namecards. 

- According to this article and TOKIO Inc., the 12mm-thick namecards are thicker than the usual paper versions and this thickness is a reflection and symbol of TOKIO's history to date. The front of the namecard shows the member's name and title in the company while the reverse shows the company's name and logo.

- The logo designed by the company is made up of three wooden logs bound together by three red strings so this represents the three members of TOKIO. The red colour on the logo was personally painted by the members.

- The Fukushima Prefectural Government announced on its website today that a TOKIO section has been set up within the government office's Planning and Coordination Division which is in charge of promoting Fukushima Prefecture. The section will be the concierge/link between the division and TOKIO Inc. as both sides collaborate on the prefecture's PR activities through the new project titled "Fukushima wo tanoshinde morau" (Enjoy Fukushima).

- The motto of the company reflects a change in stance from "Do it yourself" to "Do it ourselves" i.e. calling everyone to join TOKIO in participating in their activities.

- The 5 letters of TOKIO now stand for i.e. Team -> Oneness -> Knot -> Idea -> Ours. It means becoming a TEAM now to become ONE, with a firm KNOT in our hearts and pondering over IDEAs so that we can make the future OURS.

- The website has greeting messages from the president Joshima Shigeru, vice-president cum planning director Kokubun Taichi and vice-president cum PR director Matsuoka Masahiro where they talk largely about tapping on their experience over the years to spread awareness of what they know so that this contributes to creating new skills and knowledge useful for the future. They also mention the importance of being hands-on with what they are going to create in future.

- The website talks about the three pillars of their business concept being: spreading awareness of the things created nationwide, forming collaborations and creating things with the people they are involved with. 

- The section calling upon everyone to join TOKIO in their activities is still under construction though so it remains to be seen how they plan to involve the public in this aspect.

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