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President’s Message
Newsletter "SEI WORLD" 2016 Vol. 466

Masayoshi Matsumoto President & CEO

Spirit of “No Side”

Should the U.K. remain in the EU or leave? The result of the national referendum to choose one of these alternatives will have been revealed by the time you read this. With only three days left before the voting, the campaign, which was halted temporarily, has resumed, and I hear that it is intensifying. I assume that as public opinion is almost evenly separated into two camps, many U.K. citizens can understand how Hamlet felt when delivering that renowned monologue.

When I worked in the U.K., I was visited by the president of the neighborhood association of the district where our U.K. office was located. The president asked whether I would allow them to use a conference room for one of their meetings. At the meeting, they actively discussed policies that the national government should adopt, in order to submit recommendations from the position of ordinary citizens. Although I’m Japanese, I was invited to the meeting. I still remember that I was surprised to find the depth of British people’s political awareness.

As you may know, the term “no side” represents the essence of rugby, which was invented in England. The phrase means that once the game is over, there is “no side” for winners or losers. In Japan, the meaning of the phrase is incorporated in “game over.” However, I hear that “full time” is now commonly used to express that meaning around the world. I guess this spirit suggests that the players should not forget to behave as gentlemen all the more because rugby is a fierce contact sport. At an after-match function, which is literally held after a rugby game, all the players and staff of the two teams gather together. At this event, while enjoying various dishes, beer and other drinks, participants praise each other for their hard work and deepen their friendships.

I hope that all U.K. citizens will demonstrate the spirit of “no side” after the fierce fight by respecting each other without distinguishing between friends and foes.

Masayoshi Matsumoto President & CEO

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