Benefits of Business IntegrationBuilding on the strengths of both companies to learn and grow together
I am convinced that by becoming a member of the Aisin Group, Shiroki will overcome the challenges that Mr. Matsui enumerated and will be able to further develop its strengths.
I believe our joining the Group will lead to an optimum mixture of Aisin’s comprehensive strengths, such as solid technical capabilities, passionate commitment to quality, and focus on details at production sites, and Shiroki’s advantages in terms of “simple, slim, speedy” low-cost technologies. If we transform this into a new combined strength, I have the sense we will be able to compete with both mega-suppliers and new competitors in emerging countries.
Another characteristic of this business integration is that Aisin and Shiroki are in equal positions. The Shiroki company name, company organization, and brand will remain as it is, and the entire management framework and all employees will be staying in their current positions. I believe that with these conditions and with various aspects of Aisin’s expertise transferred to Shiroki, it will be a win-win situation for all concerned.
The advantage of integration is that Aisin and Shiroki can learn from one another in various areas such as development, production and procurement, and can enhance our respective strengths and competitiveness. In the near future we intend to tackle organizational restructuring in earnest so that the synergistic effects of integration can be achieved without sacrificing the pride in manufacturing that Shiroki has cultivated over many years.
For that purpose, we will first devote our full efforts to exterior functional parts that the Aisin Group has assigned us, and aim to raise them to the expected level as soon as possible.
Regarding this point, I have full confidence because I have observed Shiroki’s seven business locations in Japan and six abroad for myself, and I firmly grasp their potential.
In Japan there are two types of plants, namely large-scale plants that produce seats and doorframes, and plants that produce a wide range of products in small quantities for various automakers. I believe that at the latter type of plant in particular there are challenges in terms of cost, but I was very interested and impressed at the effectiveness of their operations. Their creativity and ingenuity in areas that Aisin lacks, such as “intensive production” technologies on the manufacturing line, made a lasting impression on me.
I also visited all the Aisin factories related to the auto body part sector in Japan and abroad, and everywhere I saw everyone had strong pride in being a member of the Aisin Group and there was a highly positive atmosphere.
Also, I was astonished at the extent to which each plant has a clear philosophy and commitment, and I thought there were many things for us to learn. Quality is the top priority in all cases, but for example, one plant is dedicated to die casting while another plant takes pride in being the best at equipment changeover, and others embrace the challenges of production technology. Thus I am looking forward to learning and absorbing various aspects, so that we can further advance our growth and evolution.
Goals As Members of the Aisin GroupBuilding on the strengths of both companies to learn and grow together
The Aisin Group is a corporate group with various specialized abilities, and we have had a business climate in which each company makes decisions swiftly and steadily advances in their sector. I believe this is still the best way to compete in the marketplace. However, as competition becomes more globalized as it is today, it is tough to succeed with this approach alone. Our core companies independently and autonomously exercise their specialized expertise, but it is also important that the entire Group moves in the same direction. In the future, I believe it is best that we join forces, and together with Shiroki, produce greater results than ever.
There are three areas where I believe we need to change as members of the Group.
First of all, Shiroki has been an industry follower until now, but I feel that from now on we should aim to be industry leaders. We need to grasp with greater sensitivity where market trends are headed, what customers expect from us, and what strategies competitors are applying to business development, decide what we should do, and actively utilize opportunities to appeal to our customers.
Second, we would like to enhance the quality of our workmanship, not to mention the quality of the product, by entrenching here at Shiroki the Aisin Group’s basic philosophy of “Quality First.”
The third is overseas expansion, which we have not been able to do effectively so far. While utilizing the Aisin Group’s global network, we aim to grow significantly overseas and contribute to the further development of the Aisin Group.
While firmly adhering to Shiroki’s corporate climate of “simple, slim, speedy,” we aim to be a company that can contribute positively to the Aisin Group.
The goal of this business integration is to forcefully accelerate efforts to strengthen the competitiveness and marketing capabilities of the entire Group, with the aim of becoming the world’s top auto body parts manufacturer. From April 1, 57 Aisin team members including department managers are being dispatched to Shiroki, seven employees from Shiroki joined Aisin, and we have made a strong start on mutual efforts to reorganize.
As a matter of fact, it has been 73 years since the foundation of Tokai Koku Kogyo, the predecessor of Aisin. Shiroki and Aisin both have histories of 70 years or more. With this business integration, we look forward to growing over the next 70 years, and intend to take decisive actions that keep the market’s eyes glued on the Aisin Group.