AKRON, OH — On May 13 at its board of directors meeting, The Yokohama Rubber Co. announced changes in directorships and the introduction of the position of “corporate officer.” The changes will become effective upon approval at a shareholders meeting scheduled for June 29.
Hisao Suzuki, vice president, representative director, will retire from the board of directors, and Yasuo Tominaga will assume the responsibilities of chairman and representative director. Tadanobu Nagumo will become president and representative director.
In addition, Yokohama made the following appointments:
Keigo Ueda to director and senior managing corporate officer;
Takashi Sugimoto to director and senior managing corporate officer;
Toshihiko Shiraki to managing corporate officer;
Shinichi Suzuki, Koichi Tanaka, Takashi Fukui, Toru Kobayashi, Toshihiko Suzuki and Norio Karashima to corporate officers.
The corporate officers will assume responsibility for business operations, according to Yokohama. “Introducing corporate officership will contribute to the clarification of the responsibility of corporate decision-making and business operation,” the company stated in a release. The tiremaker said it intends for corporate officership to make board meetings more active and business operations more efficient.
As a result of the organizational changes, the number of directors will be reduced to seven from 19, while the number of corporate officers will be 19, including five officers who will also serve as directors. The tire company also announced that it has created a Director Personnel/Remuneration Committee to advise the board of directors.
Also on May 13, Yokohama announced consolidated results for the fiscal year 2004, which ended on March 31. Net sales increased 0.3 percent, to 401,718 million yen, but operating income declined 9.1 percent, to 21,073 million yen, the company reported, and said the decline was due mostly to increases in tire exports and higher prices for shipping and raw materials, such as natural rubber. Ordinary income decreased 8.2 percent, to 17,258 million yen, but a tax reduction boosted net income 1.8 percent, to 10,331 million yen, the company said.
Sales of the Yokohama Tire Group gained 0.6 percent, to 288,629 million yen, due in part to favorable export demand in Europe, Asia and Oceania, the manufacturer reported. Sales of OE tires increased from the previous year, and sales of replacement tires were basically unchanged, though demand was slow in Japan. Group operating income fell 11.5 percent, to 15,280 million yen, primarily due to high raw materials prices, according to the company.
As for fiscal year 2005 (Apr. 1 to Mar. 31, 2005), Yokohama management projected that net sales will increase 2.1 percent, to 410 billion yen. Ordinary income will decrease 7.3 percent, to 16 billion yen, with net income declining 12.9 percent, to 9 billion yen, executives forecasted. These forecasts were based on management’s expectations for a continuing rise in raw material prices and a high yen.
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