NJPW President Harold Meij spoke with The Mainichi on his new role, current NJPW World numbers, and short term goals for the company. Here are some of the highlights:
Becoming the new NJPW President:
"I think there are long-time fans that must be worrying, 'What? The operator is a foreigner? What's going to happen?' Because I look like a foreigner, you know? They worry that New Japan might change. I wanted to come myself as the President and talk with the fans to alleviate any anxiety they might have."
Current NJPW World subscribers:
"My thinking hasn't changed since my time at Takara Tomy. I want to expand the fanbase regardless of age, gender or nationality. New Japan has fantastic content, so it has the possibility of picking up popularity overseas. At the moment, there are some 100,000 registered members on our video streaming service 'New Japan Pro-Wrestling World,' and 40,000 of them live outside Japan. I would like to aim for the international market with things like videos in English or events for foreign tourists."
Short-term goal with NJPW:
"Even though there are a plethora of markets abroad, many Japanese companies aren't making any use of them. As someone not bound by language or cultural barriers, I would like to become a pioneer in sports marketing. In three years at least, I will achieve profits of 10 billion yen [$904 million]. I will continue to show up at more and more matches, because I have to judge the reactions of the fans for myself. To that end, I will speak with fans whenever I have the chance."
Meij also discussed the quality of NJPW matches. You can check out the full interview by clicking here.