On behalf of Misawa Homes, I offer our deepest appreciation for your continued support. This notice was sent to inform you of the 15th Ordinary General Meeting of Shareholders to be held on June 28 (Thursday).
In October 2017, we here at Misawa Homes celebrated the 50th anniversary of the founding of the company. I am grateful for your continued support and would like to express my sincere gratitude.
The times have changed significantly over the last 50 years and the world is going to see changes to the structure of society including an accelerating decline in population. We can also expect lifestyles to further change with the introduction of technologies such as AI (artificial intelligence) and IoT. When describing the ideal state of the housing business in the future, we emphasize our desire to be a corporate group that creates lifestyles. The Group will continue to adapt to the changing times, meet the needs of society, and offer new businesses and services that transcend the boundaries of a conventional housing manufacturing and construction company.
The first fiscal year of the three-year medium-term management plan, "First Step For NEXT 50," announced last year, began with expectations of a challenging market environment and planned decreases in income and profit. With somewhat weak demand for housing construction, we implemented various measures and are progressing with a number of initiatives. As a result, while income from net sales decreased, final profits increased by ¥400 million compared to the previous fiscal year. The first year went mostly according to plan with improved profitability due to efforts such as cost reductions. We will continue working on the swift implementation of various measures and, with the next 50 years (NEXT50) in mind, we are aiming for the sustainable growth of the Group and improvement of its corporate value over the medium- to long-term.
We have begun tackling new challenges in pursuit of the goals outlined in our NEXT50 plan. In September of last year, our achievements up to now at Showa Base in Antarctica received recognition, and our research proposal was selected by JAXA. Over the next three years, we will be moving forward with collaborative research focused on developing a manned base on the moon. With this project, we will demonstrate the potential of Misawa Homes' DNA, which was strengthened in Antarctica and has produced numerous innovations, and contribute to the growth of Japan' s space development.
As for the year-end dividend for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2018, we submitted a proposal to the General Meeting of Shareholders to approve an ordinary dividend of ¥20. We will continue putting effort into various measures to enable us to provide continuous and stable returns to shareholders.
In closing, I would like to request our shareholders' ongoing guidance and encouragement.
*Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency