Press Releases (SoftBank Telecom Corp.) 2005

Establishment of direct sales channel system for TOMATO BANK JAPAN TELECOM introduces call center solutions and Voice Net Otoku Line
- Enhancement of call center functionality and
Reduction of internal call charges to one-third -

November 21, 2005

JAPAN TELECOM CO., LTD (Head Office: Minato-ku, Tokyo; President & CEO: Hideki Kurashige, hereafter “JAPAN TELECOM”) announces that JAPAN TELECOM started to provide call center solutions and Voice Net Otoku Line to TOMATO BANK, LTD. (Head Office: Okayama-shi, Okayama; President: Tadaaki Yoshida, hereafter “TOMATO BANK”) as a solution to realize major projects including a transformation in sales force, which TOMATO BANK has been addressing recently.

TOMATO BANK operates its business at 59 branches, with its base in Okayama Prefecture. Among its mid-term business plans, TOMATO BANK focuses on two primary aims: “Enhance profitability through a transformation in sales force”; and “Strengthen relationship banking functions”. These aims concretely refer to “Establishment of direct sales channel system with strategic usage of IT”, “Drastic review of customer service procedures”, “Shift towards suggestion type sales in all branches”, and “Centralization of inbound calls to branches”.

As a part of a customer relationship management (CRM), TOMATO BANK had been receiving customers' enquiries through their customer support center, which was the bank's conventional call center, and through individual branches. To provide improved services to their customers through a better understanding of customer needs, TOMATO BANK positioned the call center as a strategic sales asset that provides supplementary sales functions to their direct sales activities, and therefore embarked on the establishment of a call center system whereby 30 staff (increased from 20) are able to handle outbound calls as well as inbounds. To fulfill TOMATO BANK's business demands, JAPAN TELECOM provided a total call center solution including: selection of equipment such as private branch exchanges (PBX), computer telephony integration (CTI) services, voice recorders, and databases; system construction, consultation on reviewing business procedures; and implementation of the Internet-banking-ready Free Call Super. This total call center solution created a reliable platform that secures precise responses to the customers' demands according to the type of service that they use.

In concrete terms, the system was established with the functionality that enables the call center staffs to pass the customer's information to the appropriate branch if they find out through their outbound call that the customer has interests in using TOMATO BANK's services, through the center's outbound call function. This system can thereby feed a variety of marketing information, such as requests from the customer approached by the call center, to the head office and to each branch, enabling continual business improvement (the new call center started its operations on November 22, 2005).

As part of the reorganization of operations, TOMATO BANK's internal communication procedures have been reviewed. As part of the review, JAPAN TELECOM offered the 120 lines of Voice Net Otoku Line fixed charge plan. The Voice Net Otoku Line service is an internal call network service that links each business site through private networks-with a low installation cost-by utilizing existing PBXs. As a result of this installation, not only are internal call costs reduced to one-third of the previous figure, but related business costs are also reduced by integrating relevant business processes, such as ordering new equipment, handled whenever required, through a single service offered by JAPAN TELECOM. Furthermore, the number of transferred calls, which occupied about half of the bank's entire internal calls, has been reduced through the introduction of a direct dialing system, which improved overall business efficiency.

JAPAN TELECOM will continue to provide its optimum Information & Communications Technology (ICT) solution services for TOMATO BANK to support the realization of their future business achievements.

TOMATO BANK Internal Communication Network Configuration Diagram

TOMATO BANK Internal Communication Network Configuration Diagram

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    Price, specification, contact and other information of products and service may be subjected to change. The information contains certain forward-looking statements that are subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such statements.
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