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Hideki Matsui to Hit for Toshiba in Japanese Ads for AV Products

18 April, 2005


Tokyo -- Toshiba Corporation is all set to make a big hit in the marketplace, as New York Yankees' star slugger Hideki Matsui today steps up to represent the company's AV products in a new advertisement campaign pitched at customers in Japan.

Matsui is one of Japan's most popular sportsmen, admired for his total dedication and batting power on the diamond, and liked for his friendly personality off the field. He has the star power and popularity to match Toshiba's exciting line of innovative AV products, including the "face" series of flat panel TVs, the industry-defining "RD" series of HDD & DVD digital video recorders and category-destroying "Qosmio" AV PCs. Television, newspaper and magazine ads featuring Matsui and these products will start to appear at the end of May 2005.

"We are really excited to be working with Hideki Matsui," said Makoto Shirai, General Manager of Toshiba's Corporate Branding Office. "We really wanted someone who can embody the great performance of our latest digital products, and Matsui is the man. He is totally dedicated to excellence and delivering the results that fans want. We are just the same in our business, and we feel that Matsui and our AV products make a superb team."

Matsui has been a star in Japan since high school, when he set a record of 60 home runs in four years of appearances in the annual high school baseball tournament, an event that grips the country every summer. In 1992, Matsui's unstoppable batting had his opponents calling him "Godzilla," a nickname that has stuck to this day. In one famous game, the opposing team was so awed by Godzilla's power that the pitcher chose to walk him five consecutive times rather than pitch to him.

Matsui continued to carve out his legend after he was the first round draft choice of Japan's most famous pro team, the Yomiuri Giants. From 1993 to 2002, he was the power driver at the heart of the Giants, which fought its way to four Japanese Series titles. During that time, Matsui took the home run title three times, won the battling title and was the Central League MVP three times.

Matsui opened a new chapter in his stellar career in December 2002, when he signed a 3-year, $21million contract with baseball's most famous and enduring team, the New York Yankees. Once at Yankee Stadium, Matsui showed he was intent on continuing where he left off in Japan, with a grand slam in his first game. Going into his third season in the Majors, Matsui seems stronger every time he's at bat, and he's a firm favorite of the Yankees' fans—some of the toughest fans in any sport in the world.

Matsui has also won the hearts of his fellow Japanese. His enormous popularity extends into all age groups and to both men and women. He is the perfect person to help showcase the advanced features and superb performance if Toshiba's superb AV products.

Separately, Toshiba also announced today that it would provide special sponsorship for "We Will Rock You", the rock musical by Queen and Ben Elton, that will run at the Shinjuku Koma Gekijo theater from May 27 to August 24. During the show, Toshiba will operate a café space at Koma Gekijo, where it will demonstrate its latest digital consumer products, including newly announced TVs.

This year, Toshiba marks 130 years of operation. As the company celebrates an enviable record of technological innovations that have contributed to a better quality of life, it also looks forward to a future of continued advances and superb products that will captivate people around the world.


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