Material Issues

SoftBank Corp. has identified six material issues to address in order to develop both a sustainable society and sustainable growth based on the concept of “a world where all things, information, and minds are connected”. We believe these six material issues embody our corporate philosophy “Information Revolution - Happiness for Everyone” and serve as an important compass connected to our “Beyond Carrier” growth strategy.

Through the identification of and response to material issues, SoftBank will accelerate the implementation of its management strategy and contribute to the realization of a sustainable society.

Sustainability strategy

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Six material issues

The material issues are divided into those related to resolving social issues through business activities, namely “building society and industry through digital transformation (DX),” “connecting people and information to create new excitement” and “creating new businesses through open innovation,” as well as those related to solving social issues through corporate activities, namely “contributing to the global environment with the power of technology,” “building high-quality social communication networks” and “developing a resilient management foundation.”

We also view materiality not only as an opportunity to mitigate risks in our corporate and operational activities, but also to accelerate our sustainable growth.

Combining a visionary perspective for the future with SoftBank's unique point of view, the six material issues originate from contemporary society and our business, as well as from our focus on the future social environment and its challenges.

material issues

Issues are identified from the external (stakeholder) level of importance, including international guidelines such as the GRI Standards and SDGs, discussions at international conferences, investor opinions, and the views of experts representing external stakeholders, as well as our own level of importance based on discussions within each general manager, division, and subsidiary-related company, and are evaluated and set based on both perspectives.

In addition, we review material issues in each fiscal year in light of changing expectations from external stakeholders and societal trends toward ensuring the effectiveness of ESG promotion.
In implementing the material issues identification and verification process, the ESG Promotion Committee discusses the results of several discussions based on materiality assessments made by the ESG promotion managers of each division and group company based on their short-, medium-, and long-term plans, and the results of materiality assessments are approved by the Board of Directors.

In the process of materiality and its identification and verification, in addition to the impact of our business on changes in society and the external environment*1, the outlook, status and importance*2 of our business, based on the principle of double materiality, our positive and negative impacts on society and the environment are also reflected in our materiality and the value we create.

The entire company, including directors, senior management, and employees, reaffirms that these initiatives will further accelerate our management strategy and are important key drivers for becoming a comprehensive digital platform provider, and we will continue to promote both the realization of a sustainable society and the sustainable growth of our company.


  • *1

    The increased importance of climate strategy, biodiversity and natural capital; the impacts of geopolitical issues and international tensions; and the increased importance of information security and the protection of data and personal information, including cyberattacks and tightening data transfer regulations

  • *2

    The further promotion of the practical implementation of digital technologies and corporate and social DX; the creation of new lifestyle value and pursuit of customer value; global-scale business expansion; energy sector initiatives; and the increased importance of coordination with group companies and strengthening of synergy

  • *

    Obtained third-party assurance for materiality identification process (Japan Quality Assurance Organization)

External Importance

Based on the requests for various issues from international guidelines (GRI, SASB, SDGs, etc.), international reports (WBCSD VISION2050, etc.), stakeholders such as experts (university professors, industry celebrities, etc.) and investors, and external initiatives such as ESG ratings, we identify our materiality considering both the impact of society and the environment on the Company and the Group, as well as the impact of the Company and the Group on society and the environment.

Internal Importance

Based on our and our group's short- and medium-term plans and their importance in the long-term future, as well as international reports such as WBCD VISION2050 (Macro Trends and Disruptions Shaping 2020~2030) and future forecast reports issued by the Japanese Cabinet Office, importance is determined considering both the impact of society and the environment on the Company and the Group, as well as the impact of the Company and the Group on society and the environment, and we identify our materiality after discussions by the ESG Promotion Committee.

Identifying material issues Identifying material issues


  • *3

    Environmental and social impacts on the company and the company's impacts on the environment and society

  • 1Expand and enhance the efficiency of the industrial base through cutting-edge technologies
  • 2Create new industries through DX
  • 3Revitalize local communities (regional revitalization)
  • 4Realize attractive customer value through the spread of smart devices
  • 5Provide an environment in which everyone can access information
  • 6Leveraging ICT to create new lifestyles and enhance the foundations for daily life
  • 7Develop new business models with cutting-edge technologies
  • 8Incubate and spiral-up cutting-edge businesses overseas
  • 9Build systems to recruit and develop human resources to lead growth and create new businesses
  • 10Contribution to climate change policy/measures through technology and business
  • 11Promote a recycling-based society (circular economy)
  • 12Realize a prosperous society through the spread of renewable energy
  • 13Prepare sustainable life infrastructure
  • 14Construct robust communications infrastructure to contribute to disaster prevention and mitigation
  • 15Promotion of data security and privacy protection initiatives
  • 16Enhance corporate governance and ensure its effectiveness
  • 17Sustainable growth through cooperation with stakeholders
  • 18Enhance employee happiness with diversity and inclusion
  • 19Enhance productivity with advanced workplace environments

Principle of double materiality

Our materiality issues are identified on the principle of double materiality as advocated by international guidelines and others, and considering not only the impact of society and the environment on the Company and the Group but also the impact of our corporate and business activities on society and the environment.These impacts of the company are considered with respect to both positive and negative impacts on each stakeholder.

Material issues Impact on society and the environment Major Stakeholders
Building Society and Industry through DX Positive
  • Expansion of industrial infrastructure and efficiency through cutting-edge technology (Including improving labor productivity and labor shortages)
  • Creation of new businesses and industries through DX
  • Revitalizing local communities through the use of technology (Regional Revitalization)
  • Customer
  • Local community
  • Changes in employment structure due to DX/industrial transformation
Connecting people and information to create new excitement Positive
  • Provide advanced communications and ICT through the spread of smart devices to realize new information experiences and attractive value
  • Provide an environment in which everyone can access information
  • Leverage ICT to create new lifestyles and enhance the foundations for daily life (Online shopping, cashless society, advanced ICT in healthcare/education, etc.)
  • Customer
  • Local community
  • An environment is needed to curb the digital divide and other information disparities, and to make information accessible to everyone, including the elderly, people with disabilities, and the poor
  • Concerns about the impact of cyberbullying and crime due to improper access to information and use of the Internet
Creating new business through open innovation Positive
  • Promote the implementation of digital society by developing new business models using cutting-edge technologies
  • Progress in creating new value in Japan through cutting-edge overseas business incubation and spiral-up
  • Establish a mechanism for business creation that drives growth
  • Develop digital human resources capable of utilizing the latest technologies and implementing them in society
  • Customer
  • Employees
  • Shareholders/investors
  • Local community
  • Concerns about disrupting existing businesses by developing new businesses and services
Contributing to the global environment with the power of technology Positive
  • Contribute to mitigate climate change through technology and business
  • Promote a recycling-based society (circular economy)
  • Realize a prosperous society through the spread of natural energy
  • Customer
  • Employees
  • Shareholders/investors
  • Local community
  • Environment
  • GHG emissions through electricity use generated by the business
  • Environmental and social impacts associated with the use of resources (Rare metals, forests, wastewater, waste, etc.)
  • Environmental impact such as deforestation due to installation of base stations in mountainous areas
Building high-quality social communication networks Positive
  • Enjoyment of sustainable living infrastructure
  • Building a solid communications infrastructure that contributes to disaster prevention and mitigation
  • Customer
  • Employees
  • Shareholders/investors
  • Local community
  • Delays in restoration in the event of communication failures or infrastructure disruptions due to natural disasters
  • Impact on data security due to cyber attack damage, etc.
Developing a resilient management foundation Positive
  • Contribution to market stability by ensuring the sophistication and effectiveness of corporate governance
  • Developing a sustainable society through collaboration with stakeholders
  • Improve employee happiness and promote diversity inclusion to create a rewarding work environment where everyone can fulfill their potential
  • Advanced Work Environment
  • Employees
  • Shareholders/investors
  • Local community
  • NGOs/NPOs
  • Lack of governance response resulting in loss of trust by business partners and shareholders
  • Environmental and social impacts on the supply chain (Human rights, occupational health and safety, conflict minerals, etc.)

Integrate sustainability-related risks into enterprise-wide risk management

We integrate sustainability risks related to identified material issues (e.g., climate change, human resource development and retention, etc.)into company-wide risk management..
Every half year, the Risk Management Committee, whose members include the president, vice presidents, CFO, etc., and which is attended by corporate auditors and the heads of related departments, is held to evaluate and monitor risks and to review risks. Please refer to Risk Management for specific risk descriptions and management systems.

Social impact measurement and evaluation

In addition to monitoring the outputs related to the identified material issues through Material Issue KPIs, we measure and evaluate the impact on society (social impact) of some of the materiality-related projects.

Initiatives Impact on external stakeholders Amount of money Related material issues
Smartphone classes
  • Reducing the social cost associated with learning how to use smartphones will promote the participation in the digitalized society, i.e. access to information, by elderly individuals.
  • Increasing the new experiences through the use of smartphones by elderly individuals will bring economic benefits to the entire society.
4710 million yen*1 “Connecting People and Information to Create New Excitement”
(2)Provide an environment in which everyone can access information
Mobile phone recycling
  • The overall cost of industrial waste disposal and management in the entire society will be reduced.
  • The useful metals contained in used mobile phones are returned to society, promoting the transition to a circular economy.
1057 million yen*2 “Contributing to the Global Environment with the Power of Technology”
(2)Promote a recycling-based society (circular economy)


  • *1

    Societal costs associated with learning how to use smartphones and economic benefits from the Increase of Smartphone Users

  • *2

    Social cost associated with industrial waste management and value of useful metals returned to society through mobile phone recycling

Please refer to the Sustainability Report 2022 for the targets and results of Material Issue KPIs for FY2022.

Sustainability strategy
Identifying material issues