TOKYO — Bridgestone Corp. is realigning a number of executive positions in its Americas and Asia/Pacific regions in line with its drive to become a global leader in advanced mobility and sustainable solutions.
The realignment primarily affects Gabriel Asbun, CEO and chief operating officer of Bridgestone Asia Pacific, and TJ Higgins, a Bridgestone Corp. vice president and senior officer and group president, Americas Tire, for Bridgestone Americas Inc.
Mr. Asbun, an 8-year Bridgestone veteran, will assume Mr. Higgins' Americas Tire group president duties, which include responsibility for sales of all tire-led businesses throughout the Americas region, including the company's consumer and commercial tire businesses. Bridgestone describes this as its largest single business unit worldwide.
He continues as vice president and senior officer of Bridgestone Corp. while also becoming a member of the board of Bridgestone Americas. He will be based at Bridgestone Americas headquarters in Nashville, Tenn., and report to Paolo Ferrari, who became president, CEO and chief operating officer of Bridgestone Americas on Jan. 15.
In turn, Bridgestone is expanding Mr. Higgins' duties, naming him global chief digital strategic officer, vice chair of Bridgestone Americas and chair of Bridgestone Asia Pacific, in addition to his role as global chief business strategic officer for the parent company.
As the chief global officer responsible for business and digital strategy, Mr. Higgins — in partnership with the global executive team — "will play a critical role in shaping the company's future," outgoing Bridgestone Corp. CEO Masaaki Tsuya said, noting that Mr. Higgins' industry knowledge and "thought leadership" in mobility and solutions qualified him for this key role.
He will continue to be based in Nashville and report to incoming Bridgestone Corp. CEO Shu Ishibashi while also maintaining additional "matrixed dotted-line reporting structures" across global strategic business units.
In addition, Yoshikazu Shida, vice president and an officer of Bridgestone Corp., will succeed Mr. Asbun as CEO and COO of Bridgestone Asia Pacific and will remain chairman of Bridgestone (China) Investment Co. Ltd. and Bridgestone Taiwan Co. Ltd., based in Singapore.