Wednesday, February 27, 2013

US To Play Larger Role With Honda?

By Jonathon Ramsey

The increasing sales success of Honda North America (HNA) has led to Honda brass in Japan reorganizing regional operations here. The management shuffling here and in Japan is intended to both streamline and confer more responsibility on HNA "as the region assumes a larger role in shaping Honda's global business," and as Honda builds more facilities that serve several roles in the product development pipeline.

Honda's executive vice president and president of HNA Tetsuo Iwamura was named COO of automotive operations, taking over a position that had been handled by company president Takanobu Ito. Iwamura's new role puts him in charge of anything Honda makes that has four wheels, which Automotive News saysequates to 78 percent of the company's global revenue.

The current company CFO, Fumihiko Ike, will fill the now-vacant role of company chairman and Kohei Takeuchi will take his place. Takeuchi is presently the operating officer, general manager of the accounting division. The executive swaps take effect April 1, 2013.

Beyond that, a company called Honda North America Services (HNAS) will integrate IT systems, human resources and other responsibilities and streamline operations such as purchasing and manufacturing. It will pluck 50 employees from Honda's offices in Torrance, California, the new company being based in Honda's offices in Marysville, Ohio.

Honda wants to "deliver high quality products to the consumer more quickly and efficiently," and HNA is also expected to have more input into product development. Honda won't confirm it, but that could mean that the next Honda Accord is developed here.

News Source: Honda/

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