Founding Message (June 2000)

The growth of the Internet in Japan shows no sign of slowing. Users topped the 15 million level in 1999. That figure is forecast to exceed 20 million in the year 2000 leaving one in six Japanese connected.

Growth is not limited to fulfilling the role of a new means of communication. Individual and corporate transactions over the Internet are changing business practices. A nationwide connectivity framework to the classroom is redefining the process of education. The Internet has truly come to represent Japan's national infrastructure.

Given this dramatic spread in scope and scale, the Internet is often touted as a vehicle available for Anyone, Anywhere, Anyway, Anytime. It must be recognized, however, that there are large numbers of potential Japanese users rejecting the Internet on the basis of the critical issues of security, cost and complexity, many others for the simple reason that they do not see purpose or value in its use.

Recent years have seen the emergence of countless Internet businesses in Japan - the majority based on technological strengths. Few have been structured toward addressing Japanese society as a whole. The key to continued widespread Internet growth in Japan seems to hinge on the creation of a society-wide environment that truly supports the use of the Internet for everyone.

With this as a founding principle, e-side, inc. was established in June 2000. Employing a deep human network and the support of the WIDE Project and other Internet industry groups, e-side offers consulting, marketing and educational support toward further extending the reach of the Internet in Japan.

Hidekazu Arai

June 2000
Hidekazu Arai
President, e-side, inc.