TOKYO (May 12, 2014) — Bridgestone Corp. is integrating its China and Asia/Pacific tire operations into one strategic business unit in order to make more effective use of management resources.
The change will make Bridgestone Asia Pacific Pte. Ltd., the Singapore-based regional head office for tire operations in Asia/Pacific and Oceania, responsible for tire operations in China as well.
This initiative reflects a corporate goal to “upgrade the global management structure,” as outlined in the group's Mid-Term Management Plan 2013.
Bridgestone said it expects the change enable it to further global management, enhance governance in emerging countries and respond more promptly to the rapid changes in the markets.
Asia/Pacific and China are considered part of Bridgestone's “other” geographic region, along with Africa, Russia and the Middle East. This region accounted for nearly $2 billion in sales in the first quarter, or about 23 percent of Bridgestone's global sales.
Effective July 1, Narumi Zaitsu, currently senior vice president and a member of the Bridgestone Corp. board responsible for international tire business operations, will become CEO of the newly reorganized business unit.
Kunitoshi Takeda, vice president and officer, Asia Pacific, China, Middle East, Africa and Russia Tire Business Operations, will be the new entity's COO and a member of its board of directors.
Others named to the new business unit's board of directors include: Gary Garfield, vice president and senior officer of Bridgestone Corp. and a member of the noard, CEO and president of Bridgestone Americas Inc.; and Christine Karbowiak, vice president and an officer of Bridgestone Corp. and member of the board, chief administrative officer and executive vice president of Bridgestone Americas.