Introducing Marubeni Group Companies

* Articles are based on information at the time of the interview.


Business content

  • Digital signage solution business
  • Content delivery business
  • Content production/editing business
  • Marketing & effectiveness measurement business

Digital signage—The next generation media business created with Marubeni at PDC’s start-up

  • Atsushi Sugawara, President & C.E.O.

  • Digital signage at Roppongi Hills which led to PDC’s breakthrough

  • Flight information system at Haneda Airport

PDC, which joined the Marubeni Group in November 2015, is a fast-growing digital signage company. Digital signage is a new media that provides advertisements and information outdoors, at stations, airports, and other places through display panels. The market is expected to greatly expand in the future.

Since its establishment in October 2001, PDC has led the industry as the pioneer in handling “everything from system construction to content delivery management.” Originally, PDC was established through Panasonic Corporation’s in-house venture system.

Actually, it was Marubeni that created this business model. In 1998, a Marubeni employee thought display panels could be a future substitute for posters and signboards, and made a proposal to Panasonic, which sold large displays like the one in front of Shibuya Station. Panasonic and Marubeni negotiated with East Japan Railway for over a year, and in 2000, conducted a demonstration experiment of the first digital signage advertisement at the South Exit of JR Shinjuku Station. It was apparently highly effective. Paper posters only had 5% visibility rate, while the rate for the digital signage was 60-70%, demonstrating an overwhelming effectiveness. The commercialization plan began immediately, but Marubeni was in the middle of the “A” PLAN and had to hold back on new investments at the time. So PDC was established within Panasonic.

PDC’s business went on track with the installation of 200 digital displays at Roppongi Hills, which opened in May 2003, and the content delivery operation began. The digital signage advertisements at Roppongi Hills were extremely successful. After that, PDC installed digital signage at Tokyo Midtown, Tokyo Skytree, and other large facilities, as well as at mobile phone stores and banks with thousands of branches. PDC now has digital signage installed in over 10,000 locations across Japan.

Market to expand 2.7 times in 2020—Becoming a global company through synergy with Marubeni

  • JR’s next-generation vending machine with marketing features is installed at 500 stations

  • Kyoto Tower’s observation deck

  • Edo Sakura Dori underground passage at Coredo Muromachi by Mitsui Fudousan Co., Ltd. and Nihonbashi Muromachi Higashi Danchi Management Association

The digital signage business consists of system construction, content production, and delivery operation, and PDC is a one-stop provider for all three services. Being a pioneer in the industry with many leading companies as clients, PDC’s advantage is high-added value content production and cloud-based distribution.

The domestic market size is approximately JPY 100 billion, and a rapid growth to JPY 270 billion is expected by 2020. In particular, the advertising/promotion area is estimated to be approximately JPY 150 billion, five times the current size, a growth area that PDC will also be focusing on.

Especially in the future, huge growth is expected in areas like multilingual support, visitor information for foreign tourists, and staging of specific zones and spaces. PDC is actively expanding the overseas business, with the 2013 establishment of PDC North America in Los Angeles, U.S., and developments in Asia such as Indonesia and Vietnam, as well as the Aeon Mall Wuhan.

Going forward, PDC will strengthen the synergy with Marubeni, and grow into a global company.


Incorporated October, 2001
Head Office 2-23-1, Akasaka, Minato-Ku, Tokyo
TEL 81-3-5575-2455
Number of Employees 100
Paid-in Capital 276.8 million yen
Marubeni Group’s Investment Ratio 30%
Website (Japanese only)

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