Joint Development of SEIKO Brand Cyber Time Business

Seiko Corporation
Seiko Instruments Inc.
Seiko Precision Inc.

Seiko Corporation (President Koichi Murano; head office, Chuo-ku, Tokyo), Seiko Instruments Inc. (abbreviated as SII; COO Akio Irie; head office, Chiba City, Chiba Pref.) and Seiko Precision Inc. (abbreviated as SPI; President Shinji Hattori; head office, Narashino City, Chiba Pref.) have decided to expand the network-based businesses of time authentication and distribution services, previously pursued independently by SII and SPI, by working together under the SEIKO brand. The joint development will be known as “SEIKO Cyber Time Business.”
The implementation of digital networks and the rapid proliferation of e-commerce promise to greatly expand the need for, and importance of, time authentication and other time-related business.
The three companies intend to develop this business under the common flag of the SEIKO brand, which is trusted around the world in the realm of time keeping. They will contribute to the development of the infrastructure for so-called “electronic time” over the networks and seek to establish future global standards using the SEIKO brand.

SEIKO has long been a pioneer of landmark time-keeping technology. In 1969, SEIKO marketed the world’s first quartz watches, dramatically boosting the accuracy of time keeping and enabling the man in the street to know the correct time with great precision. Later technical innovation produced the miniaturization and cost reductions that powered rapid worldwide diffusion of SEIKO brand quartz watches.

SEIKO has worked actively as the official timekeeper of many international sporting events, including the Olympic Games, where detailed and accurate time-keeping is vital. SEIKO has also provided large, highly legible time displays for many public facilities, including international expositions and sports stadiums.

Recently, in line with the Japanese government’s “e-Japan” Strategy, the Internet and personal-computer usages have been increasing very rapidly. A survey by the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry predicts that the volume of e-commerce within Japan will exceed 107 trillion yen in 2005. This makes the trustworthiness of the electronic time on networks a key issue for society.

In June 2002, in view of the accelerating proliferation of e-commerce, the gathering momentum in the move towards electronic government in 2003, and the rapid growth of electronic data-management business, the Time Business Study Group *1) of the Ministry of Public Management, Home Affairs, Posts and Telecommunications published a report. This specified the need for network systems capable of supporting these developments, and for accurate and reliable records and certification by third-party of the time at which data was created, when transactions took place, and when procedures were completed, to guard the accountability of electric data against system failures and illegal operations.
This environment is making the technologies for time management and related services on networks a fundamental pillar of society.

Currently, SII supplies web service providers and Certificate Authorities with time authentication, distribution and audit services under the “Chronotrust” name. SPI manufactures and markets time servers and other standard time-distribution systems.
SII and SPI will in future cooperate with Seiko Time Systems Inc. (President Shusuke Takenaka; head office, Chuo-ku, Tokyo; a fully owned subsidiary of Seiko corporation), which currently handles sales of some SPI products, in a joint marketing effort.

In the short term, business development efforts will concentrate on the areas in greatest demand from business users, which require the time traceability, certification, authenticity and accuracy of electronic time. This will actually mean seeking to expand the business in electronic government and in e-commerce including the transactions between financial institutions.

The cooperative development by these three companies is planned to secure a 40% share of time-related business on networks with SEIKO branded products and services in 2005. The current objectives call for sales of five billion yen in 2003. According to the report published by the Time Business Study Group, the total for this business is predicted to be 74.2 billion yen in 2005, and extremely rapid growth is expected from now on.

Seiko Corporation, SII and SPI intend to participate as fully in the “Cyber Time” business on networks as they already do in the real world. They will therefore provide network-based time distribution, authentication and auditing services, and engage in system integration business.

*1) Note: The Time Business Study Group was terminated in June 2002, and its functions taken over by the Time Business Forum. SII serves as a board member of the Forum and SPI is a member.

Business Philosophy

By providing trustworthy time data on networks, we will contribute to progress in the ubiquitous information society. In order to achieve this, SEIKO will accomplish the following:

  • Provide a means of performing electronic business transactions safely on today’s open and unprotected networks.
  • As a trustworthy third party, we will guarantee their secrecy, integrity, availability, traceability, authenticity and credibility.

SEIKO provides the optimum products and services required in cyberspace in all the areas of “keeping”, “distributing”, and “verifying” the time.

Keep – Hardware
Chronotrust information centres (TA), Time servers, Rubidium nuclear clocks, Time data clocks, temperature-compensating quartz oscillators, high-accuracy quartz oscillators, etc.

Distribute – Networks
GPS, long-wave, FM, Tel-JJY and other reception-mode networks and time distribution on networks.

Verify – Services
Time authentication services, audit and supervisory services, time server systems, etc.

Contact Information
Press Contact
Seiko Corporation
Corporate Communications Dept.
Tel: 03-3563-8292, Email:

Seiko Instruments Inc.
Corporate Communications Dept.
Tel: 043-211-1185, Email:

Seiko Precision Inc.
Public Relations Dept.
Tel: 047-470-7028, Email:

The content of this news release is based on the information as of the release date. Please note that the content may not be always up-to-date.