About Our Founder Tokushichi Nomura | 13. Stepping Stone to Overseas Business
Tokushichi next moved to put his bond trading plans into action. The substantial volume of bonds issued by the government, and the influx of foreign currency resulting from successful issues of sterling- and French franc-denominated public bonds, amounting to £11 million and F450 million respectively, in 1910, loosened credit, lowered interest rates, and firmed up the market in Japanese government securities. As a result, foreign brokerage firms began to trade actively in Japanese public bonds. As yet, Japanese securities firms were not involved in the bond business, which was dominated by the big banks. It was not a situation to Tokushichi's liking.
His preparations, especially his hiring of English-speaking staff, have been noted. One such person who joined Nomura Shoten at this time was Tetsuji Asano: "The Chairman called me in one day and said, 'In Tokyo, they're actively selling public bonds overseas, but here in Osaka there isn't anyone doing it yet. I want to get started, and that's why I've had you come and join us.'" In fact, overseas transactions at this time were carried out through the Yokohama offices of a British trading firm, Sale & Frazer Ltd. That Tokushichi was determined to enter the overseas market when he was not yet even deeply involved in the domestic market indicates the extent of his international vision and his understanding of how important the bond market would become. Meanwhile, in order to promote understanding of Japan in general and of the Osaka bond market in particular, an English-language company profile was issued in January 1910.