Message from Editor-in-Chief

Tsuneo Watanabe
Photo by Kishin Shinoyama

The Yomiuri Shimbun published its first edition in a small two-story building in 1874 in the Toranomon district of Tokyo. Our office was destroyed twice, first in the Great Kanto Earthquake and again in an air raid just before the end of World War II, but after the war we built a strong nationwide sales network and rapidly expanded. Committed to accurate and prompt reporting and a moderate, sensible editorial line, we grew to be the newspaper with the world's largest circulation. In 1994, the daily circulation of our morning edition topped 10 million copies, cementing our position as Japan's foremost newspaper.

As a news medium, by producing and publishing newspapers for many years, we have fulfilled our social mission of fostering sound public opinion, which underpins democracy. To enable us to steadily continue in this role, we have diversified and strengthened our business platform through businesses beyond newspaper publishing. We have expanded into a series of socially beneficial businesses, such as establishing the Yomiuri Giants professional baseball team, Japan's first private television network, Nippon TV, and the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra. Another example was welcoming the old-line Chuokoron-sha publisher (now Chuokoron-Shinsha, Inc.) into the Yomiuri Shimbun Group.

In 2021, the Yomiuri Land amusement park became a wholly owned subsidiary positioned as the Group's seventh core company, and the Yomiuri Shimbun Holdings became a major shareholder in Tokyo Dome Corporation, which manages the home field of the Yomiuri Giants. The Group currently has around 150 affiliates and organizations, and actively contributes to enhancement of people's daily lives and Japan's development by operating businesses in a wide range of fields including sports, culture, entertainment, health care, and public welfare.

As access to information via digital devices has advanced, people throughout the world have become accustomed to gaining information from sources such as the internet and social media. This trend has had a big impact on lifestyles, cultures, education, discussion, and public opinion worldwide, giving rise to various problems. These include the repeated spread of inaccurate information via microblogs and so-called fake news.

In this kind of digital society, the value of newspapers as a medium for comprehensively and systematically accessing information and gaining knowledge of multifaceted news covering areas such as politics, economics, international affairs, and society is once again being appreciated year by year. Based on scrupulous news-gathering by journalists posted throughout Japan and in overseas bureaus, The Yomiuri Shimbun distributes accurate, high-quality information through its nationwide sales network.

As Japan's most trusted media group, the Yomiuri Shimbun Group will continue to be committed to working together with the public.

Tsuneo Watanabe
The Yomiuri Shimbun Holdings

Tsuneo Watanabe

Born in Tokyo in 1926. Undergraduate degree in philosophy from the University of Tokyo Faculty of Letters. Joined The Yomiuri Shimbun in 1950. After serving as Washington Bureau chief and editor of the Political News Department, became chairman of the Editorial Board and then editor-in-chief of the Yomiuri Shimbun Holdings. Has written many books, among them, Anti-Populism Theory, (Shincho Shinsho), The Memoirs of Tsuneo Watanabe (Chuko Bunko), My Life Stories (Chuko Shinsho Laclef), and Anatomy of Conservative Party Factions (Koubundou).