TOKYO - Honda Motor Co. has added a management layer of regional operating officers with the aim of increasing the autonomy and responsiveness of its regional operations around the world.
In 1994, Honda established COOs for each of its regions, which include Japan, North America, Europe, South America and Asia. The new regional operating officers are meant to support the COO and board in each region, with responsibility for specific categories or areas of regional business operations.
The new positions, however, do not strictly follow the five regional divisions.
Honda named the following executives to the posts effective April 1, but did not immediately identify their areas of responsibility:
For North America: Hideo Takemura, currently vice president of American Honda Motor Co.
For Japan: Kenichi Koyama, currently head of the automotive operations there.
For Europe, a triumvirate of Toshio Ishino, from U.K.-based Honda Motor Europe Ltd.'s automobile sales operation, Kazuhiko Sakata, president of France-based Honda Motor Europe (South) SA, and Shoichi Tanaka, president of U.K.-based Honda Racing Development Ltd.
For Asia, Koji Kadowaki, head of Guangzhou Honda Automobile Co. in China, and Haruo Takiguchi, president of Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India Ltd.
In addition, Honda named Hiroshi Sekine, plant manager at Honda's Saitama plant, and Ryoichi Tokuzumi, plant manager at the Suzuka plant, as functional operating officers.
Honda explained in a statement that each plant is considered an independent business unit, rather than as part of a single manufacturing function within Japan.