The next CoA (common, compact, collaborative) HVAC line started production at DENSO’s manufacturing facility in Battle Creek on July 22. Although it is the second CoA line, associates throughout the region made sure it is a project filled with firsts.
“The goal for this project was localization, and it was a huge development opportunity,” said Mike Curbey, HVAC Engineering Manager. “This is the first CoA line in the world to be built 100% locally.”
CoA2 is also the first HVAC line with IoT (Internet of Things) connectivity and the first line at DENSO in Battle Creek with a collaborative robot.
Senior Engineering Technician Eric Paulson said that the team at DENSO in Battle Creek worked closely with machine builders at DENSO in Maryville, Tennessee on the localization effort.
“One of our biggest challenges was helping the machine builders understand our needs exactly,” Eric said. “We were starting with something originally designed in Japan and asking the DENSO Tennessee team to build it to the specifications of our local needs in Michigan. We just had to figure all of that out.”
The new line will produce HVACs for three Subaru models produced in the United States. Subaru of Indiana Automotive (SIA) has already recognized the line as a world-class process.
Congratulations to everyone that made the HVAC Auto Line 2 a reality over the last two years. This is a big step towards DENSO’s future!
Earlier this year, Dr. Jeff McCord was named Commissioner of the State of Tennessee Labor & Workforce Development Department. Hand-picked by Tennessee Governor Bill Lee, Dr. McCord oversees divisions and programs that provide a vast array of services that support jobs and workforce development.
Last week, Commissioner McCord visited DMTN Plants 203 and 204 to talk about workforce development, tour the facilities and talk with associates. The first member of Governor Lee’s staff to visit DMTN, Commissioner McCord said he was very impressed with the DENSO facilities and associates. During remarks to plant and Maryville Community leadership, he pledged to continue workforce development programs during his term.
Ongoing workforce development is critical to help DENSO meet its Long-term Policy 2030 – without talented associates, we cannot achieve our goals – and it supports the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) number 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth. The SDGs are a global, shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future.
Thank you to those who made this high-profile visit possible: Mr. Nakamizo, Chuntao Ye, Jack Helmboldt, Britt Autry, Charlie Chujo, Mike Peevy, David Byrum, Kay Morrison, and the DMTN S&H/Communications/Community Relations/GA/HR/NAITS teams.
Commissioner McCord talking to DMTN associates on a tour of the plants.
The first female CEO of a major global automaker was appointed just five years ago. In Silicon Valley, 95% of the tech workforce is white males. Fifty-four percent of employees believe their employers could do more to promote gender equality.
Diversity and inclusion are issues that permeate all industries, not just automotive. At DENSO, we are taking active steps to change that narrative.
That’s why today, we are thrilled to announce we have named Denise Carlson, vice president, North American Production Innovation Center and Safety, Health and Environment, as Executive Lead of North American Diversity and Inclusion (D&I). Carlson, who was one of the first female engineers hired at DENSO, has been a part of DENSO for nearly 25 years.
We spoke to Denise on her new role and how D&I will help us reach long-term goals and shape the future of mobility.
Why is diversity and inclusion important?
First and foremost, accepting and respecting people of all races, ages, genders, ethnicities, backgrounds and cultures is the right thing to do.
Second, embracing D&I is one of the best ways to spark innovation. When we bring together diverse groups of people, it opens our eyes to the fact that there is always more than one way to achieve the same goal. Diverse groups offer unique perspectives to difficult challenges, break the cycle of inside-the-box thinking and bring great new ideas and opportunities to the table, which is critical for a company wanting to innovate.
This is particularly important for DENSO. We’re undergoing tremendous change – from a shift in business strategy to a focus on software-based solutions. Constant innovation is crucial if we want to remain competitive and best serve our customers.
What are you most excited about in your new role?
To start, I want to say that creating this position is a significant and symbolic moment at DENSO and I’m honored to be a part of it. Yes, we have D&I efforts already in place, but this shows the world we have a stake in the ground to truly progress in this area.
I am looking forward to working closely with our manufacturing facilities across North America to align on what D&I is, our goals and why it needs to be an integral part of daily functions. My hope to eventually create a work environment where diversity and inclusion is no longer a topic of discussion – because it’s engrained in the way we do business.
What does DENSO currently do for its D&I efforts?
In 2016, DENSO established the North American D&I Council to develop a three-year strategy to create and implement a culture of inclusion that promotes the diversity of all associates. We currently have D&I training for leaders at every level to strengthen understanding of D&I. At DENSO, our leaders are the champions behind this effort. They are committed to fostering an inclusive and diverse environment.
Other action items include:
Finally, it’s important to point out that diversity and inclusion are two separate things. Diversity is the collection of our similarities and differences based on characteristics that we are born with, experiences we have had and choices we have made. Inclusion occurs when people are welcomed, valued, respected and heard.
There’s more to do to be sure, and I look forward to working with associates around the country to lead that charge.
To read the press release announcing Denise’s new role at DENSO, click here.
The AOES team received an official business award from BMW North America to supply remanufactured alternators produced at DPAM Murrietta Operations. BMW will source a total of 17 part numbers that will be distributed to their North American dealership network. On March 12th BMW asked the AOES team to participate in the dealership announcement (Pictured left to right Gary Price Sales Manager, Stephanie Cotton Program Manager, Tom Ranger Product Manager). The AOES team would like to thank the entire DPAM organization for their support to win this important business.
Today, we’d like to announce executive leadership changes and appointments across its North America organization to advance our long-term commitment to create new value for the future of mobility.
Effective April 1, 2019, these executive changes are an example of how DENSO is changing the way we operate to achieve our Long-term Policy 2030. Specifically, these changes are part of Management Reform.
Part of long-term policy 2030, Management Reform is DENSO’s approach to transform our management team and structure to work with tremendous speed and efficiency. This will help us remain competitive, allowing us to operate more efficiently and accelerate our decision-making process.
Shinichi Nakamizo will serve as executive officer of DENSO Corporation. In addition, he will serve as executive officer of North America Manufacturing and president of DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee (DMTN). He will transition from his current role as president of DENSO Manufacturing Mexico (DNMX).
Steve Milam will serve as executive officer of DENSO Corporation. In addition, he will serve as North America Corporate executive officer, executive officer of North America Powertrain Systems Business, and executive officer of Electrification Systems Business. He will transition from his current role as chief executive officer of DENSO’s North America Thermal Systems Center (TAC) Business Group.
Jack Helmboldt will resign as executive director of DENSO Corporation and retire as president of DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee. He will continue to serve as president emeritus of DMTN, and executive advisor to DENSO, providing guidance, knowledge and support to DENSO’s business operations and manufacturing leadership development. Helmboldt will also continue to serve as a representative for DENSO in its External Affairs, government and community efforts.
Andris Staltmanis will serve as North America Thermal Systems Center (TAC) Business lead. He will transition from his current role as president of DENSO Manufacturing Michigan (DMMI).
Marty Deschenes will serve as North America Gasoline Systems Business lead and North America Exhaust Aftertreatment Systems Business lead. In addition, he will serve as president of DENSO Manufacturing Athens Tennessee (DMAT). He will transition from his current role as Electrification Systems Business lead and vice president of Electrification Systems at DMTN.
Shuji Kimoto will serve as head of Motors Manufacturing Division 2 for DENSO Corporation. He will transition from his current role as president of ASMO North Carolina.
Masanori Iyama will serve as North America Motors Business lead. In addition, he will serve as president of DENSO Manufacturing North Carolina, previously known as ASMO. Effective April 1, 2019, ASMO will be integrated into DENSO and assume its name as DENSO Manufacturing North Carolina (DMNC). Iyama will transition from his current role as head of Motor Planning Division for DENSO Corporation.
Jon Callies will serve as North America Electric Components Business and North America Electrification Components Business lead. He will transition from his current role as director of Electrification Manufacturing at DMTN.
In addition to his executive officer appointment, Steve Milam will serve as head of North America Human Resources.
Yukio Asano will end his expatriate assignment and return to Japan. He will transition from his current role as executive vice president of Corporate Function.
Makoto Hasegawa will serve as head of North America Corporate Division Finance Group. He will transition from his current role as executive coordinator of Corporate Function.
Dave Grimmer will serve as head of North America Production Innovation Center (NAPIC) Division. He will transition from his current role as vice president of HVAC Operations at DMMI.
Satoshi “Scott” Inukai will serve as head of Mobility Systems Manufacturing for DENSO Corporation. He will transition from his current role as senior vice president of NAPIC Division.
In addition to his executive officer appointment, Shinichi Nakamizo will serve as president of DMTN. He will transition from his current role as president of DNMX.
Mitsuru Kato will serve as president of DNMX. He will transition from his current role as director of Production Engineering Division for DENSO Corporation.
In addition to his role as business lead, Marty Deschenes will serve as president of DMAT. He will transition from his current role as Electrification Systems Business lead and vice president of Electrification Systems at DMTN.
Takeshi Nagasaka will end his expatriate assignment and return to Japan. He will transition from his current role as president of DMAT.
Kevin Carson will serve as president of DMMI. He will transition from his current role as vice president of Engine Cooling Module (ECM) Operations for DENSO’s TAC Business Group.
In addition to his role as business lead, Masanori Iyama will serve as president of DMNC. He will transition from his current role as head of Motor Planning Division for DENSO Corporation.
DENSO Corp. also announced today changes to its executive structure and management team to operate more efficiently and accelerate its decision-making process, and to ensure the right people are in the appropriate positions during this critical time, effective April 1, 2019.
With the increasing deployment of vehicle electrification and automated driving technologies, DENSO also announced changes to its global organizational structure, effective April 1, 2019. Thus, its chassis control business section will be separated from the Electric Components Business Unit and become the Chassis Control Components Business Unit. This will allow for more dedicated focus and accelerated R&D and collaboration.
For more information about global personnel and organizational changes, click here.
It was our honor and privilege to host Shinsuke J. Sugiyama, Ambassador of Japan to the United States, at DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee (DMTN) in February. During his visit, Ambassador Sugiyama toured parts of the facility and met with DENSO teams to learn more about the company and our global collaboration efforts.
Ambassador Sugiyama was impressed with the speed of development at DENSO and the global collaboration between Japan and the U.S.
“What I see today is the best example of collaboration between Japan and the United States that I have ever seen,” said. Ambassador Sugiyama. “Japan and the United States are doing some really fantastic things at DENSO.”
During the presentations and discussions throughout the day, Ambassador Sugiyama’s was focused on two key topics: hiring talent and associate life, such as housing and medical treatment options.
DENSO teams shared how we are being more creative in our recruiting efforts, and how we’re tackling the competition for talent from many different angles, including working more closely with colleges, technical schools and high schools to develop and recruit talent.
Ambassador Sugiyama also displayed a genuine interest in DENSO associates’ working and living conditions. DMTN highlighted its onsite medical treatment facility for associates and family members, fitness center, and other on-site amenities.
“This was the first time any Japanese Ambassador to the United States visited our DENSO facility in Tennessee; we were proud to host him and showcase our associates and efforts,” said Jack Helmboldt, president of DMTN. “DENSO’s leadership was extremely impressed with Ambassador Sugiyama’s knowledge of the challenges manufacturing companies face and his strong interest in how DENSO is addressing those challenges. It was truly an honor to meet and share our facility with him and his team.”
Hosting Ambassador Sugiyama is one of many efforts DENSO is taking to strengthen its diplomatic relationships. As a global company, DENSO is dedicated to establishing stable economic relations based on mutual trust. To do so, we believe it’s important to learn, discuss, collaborate and understand the common interests of other countries.
Pictured front row (L to R): Masahiko Uchino, Second Secretary, Embassy of Japan in the USA; Jack Helmboldt, DMTN President; Shinsuke J. Sugiyama, Ambassador of Japan to the USA; Hiroyuki Kobayashi, Consul-General of Japan in Nashville; Kenichiro Ito, CEO, DENSO North America and Itsuro Abe, Consul, Consulate-General of Japan in Nashville. Back row (L to R): Masato Kitamae, DMTN Executive Project Leader; Toyohisa Nakano, DMTN Executive Coordinator; Chuntao Ye, DMTN Senior Vice President; Hidecki Ichikawa, DMTN Executive Coordinator; Marty Deschenes, DMTN Vice President; Bob Booker, DMTN Senior Manager and Jennifer Heckmann, Senior Program Manager, DENSO North America.
After touring DMTN, DENSO North America CEO Kenichiro Ito (R) presents Ambassador Sugiyama with “Made in Tennessee” items to commemorate his visit.
Chuntao Ye (R) walks Ambassador Sugiyama through the warehouse process in Plant 302. OPTIONAL Behind the ambassador (L to R), Senior Manager Tom Cole; DMTN President Jack Helmboldt; DMTN Vice President Hidecki Ichikawa and Toyohisa Nakano, DMTN Executive Coordinator, look on.
Did you ever wonder why we roll out Mid-term and Long-term policies every few years? Why do we call them policies? And what do they even mean to me? We assure you, there’s a method to our madness. And there’s even a name for the method we use. It’s called Hoshin Kanri.
Our Long-term Policy sets a long-term goal looking approximately ten years ahead. This approach, the word “policy” comes from “hoshin kanri”.
Hoshin Kanri is a method for ensuring that the strategic goals of a company drive progress and action at every level within a company. Also called Policy Deployment, Hoshin Kanri is an approach that strives to get every associate pulling in the same direction at the same time. It achieves this by aligning the goals of the company (Strategy) with the plans of middle management (Tactics) and the work performed by all associates (Operations). This approach is at the heart of lean manufacturing and Six Sigma.
HOSHIN = Direction or Sharp Needle. Kanri = Management. The two words together = Compass
It’s a proven fact we perform best when we have a purpose. Hoshin Kanri helps create a global purpose, and provides focus and drive toward specific goals. When we understand WHY things are important, it helps us do our jobs.
Right now, our leadership teams are working on annual planning for Fiscal Year 2019. These plans will help each business group, product group, team and individual associate, determine their targets and actions for the next year – the targets and actions that will help us get one step closer to our long-term vision goal.
DENSO’s long-term policy 2030, which was launched last year, guides the company toward its 2030 goal: to create and inspire new value for the future of mobility.
Global President Arima expanded on this in his New Year message to associates in January. In his speech, he referred to DENSO’s long-term policy as DENSO’s second founding, the largest shift in business strategy in our 70-year history. It’s a drastic change in mindset and approach, to keep up with the rapid changes in the industry and in society.
“Our long-term vision is a future with enhanced mobility, safety and peace of mind, with less impact on the environment. We still have a deep commitment to protecting lives, but we are ready to realize our second founding,” said Arima. “This means we must change our own organization to prevail in the rapidly changing business landscape and provide value to our customers that goes beyond a vehicle-centric focus to enrich society’s broader needs.”
DENSO’s long-term policy provides an overview of what the company needs to do to transform and be a leader in this rapidly changing industry. It also provides associates with a guide on how we can be united in our approach and help achieve our long-term vision.
We’ve been hearing a lot of buzzwords, lately: paradigm shift, mobility, change. What does it all mean, and how does it apply to our jobs here at DENSO? Are they mere words, or are we really going to see their effect?
I had the honor of attending the New Year Ceremony event on January 9 to hear President Arima’s special message live. With all of the excitement of President Arima’s speech winding down, and we’ve all hopefully had time to digest it, I figured it was time to share my thoughts. (For those who have not heard Arima’s New Year message, check it out here! Or read DENSO’s long term plans here!)
It’s important that we get a discussion going about this, so please share your thoughts in the comments, below.
Meet Dustin Mitchell, DENSO engineer and blogger. DENSO is committed to a culture where every associate’s diverse talents and strong passion enable us to contribute to a better world. What’s at your core? What are you passionate about? What drives and motivates you? We want to hear from you.
DENSO Spirit has been our guiding principles, the foundation, behind our innovation, quality, determination, and customer focus over the past 70 years.
As DENSO has grown to more than 170,000 people, 220 facilities, operating in 35 countries and regions around the world, we have drifted from our spirit.
In his New Year message, President Arima challenged: “Because we are busy, are we missing our foundational spirit? Are we avoiding risks?”
To achieve our long-term policy goal, and lead a transformation in the automotive industry, Arima challenges associates to go back to our spirit – strengthen our understanding and practice of our guiding principles. He redefines the DENSO Spirit values to help bring them to life for associates:
“‘Thinking things through’ means identifying the deeper meaning behind the issue, not just looking at the surface. I want you to think, think and think through with a future-oriented view,” Arima said. “The more you think, the more you see what you should do.”
“When we gather our individual power, we can maximize our performance, make changes and keep on challenging.”
“When you find what you should do, then get things done. The bigger dream you have, the bigger challenge you will face. You are the owner of your dream. It is your job.”
Watch videos on how our Mexico team is thinking things through, coming together and getting things done.
DENSO’s long-term policy, which was launched last year, guides the company toward our 2030 goal: to create and inspire new value for the future of mobility.
As a company, DENSO announced a shift in business strategy, expanding into software-based solutions in addition to our hardware expertise. This pushes our focus beyond car parts, looking at services like car sharing, and software and technologies that advance mobility (connecting cars, people and things to improve freedom of movement).
Shifting our strategy is only the beginning. In his New Year message and in our long-term policy, President Arima stresses the importance of our people to craft the future.
“To overcome this paradigm shift, which is bringing about unprecedented change, and realize further growth, all of our associates must be keen on anticipating change and taking on new challenges under the strong conviction of delivering new value to the world,” Arima states in the long-term policy. “We view this period of change as the era of our second founding, and I believe that each of our associates must take action by carrying out their [commitments] in a highly energetic manner if we are to accomplish this second founding.”
Over the past 70 years, we have become one of the largest automotive suppliers in the world. We did this through our strong foundation of DENSO Spirit – building trust (Credibility), looking to the future to provide advanced technology and value to our customers (Foresight), and working together (Collaboration).
To understand where we are today, and what we need to do to navigate the changing future, in his New Year message, President Arima asked associates to reflect on DENSO’s history and foundation.
“DENSO Spirit was our engine to craft our future. Because we are busy, are we missing our foundational spirit? Are we avoiding risks,” Arima challenged.
As the automotive industry undergoes a radical transformation with autonomous driving, electrification, car sharing and more, President Arima asks associates to find their spirit once again.
We call it our second founding.
Stay tuned to learn more about President Arima’s message, his vision for our future, and expectations for associates.
In Japan, every year, associates look forward to the president’s New Year message. Associates are eager to hear about the company direction and president’s expectations for associates moving forward.
This year, President Arima gave his New Year message in a different region – North America – and, presented to a global audience. Why?
DENSO is about to change.
In his introduction to President Arima, Ken Ito, president and CEO of DENSO International America, explained why Detroit and North America was a symbolic location for DENSO’s first global New Year Ceremony outside of Japan:
“More than 100 years ago Henry Ford launched the first assembly line down the street from this very building. That innovation helped spark a radical transformation of both manufacturing and society. It gave people freedom of mobility and changed the way people worked and lived.”
President Arima ‘s message echoed President Ito’s words:
“DENSO is about to change. Why are we changing? Because we are facing a great transformation in society.”
He talked about the radical transformation the automotive industry is undergoing. Today, autonomous driving is becoming a reality. Products are changing with electrification. Cars are no longer only for transportation; they’re connecting people to infrastructure and home life.
“Who will make these dreams come true,” Arima challenges. IT companies such as Amazon or Google? No, DENSO. We have a power to make things true in the real world.”
Stay tuned to learn more about President Arima’s message, his vision for our future, and expectations for associates.
On January 9, more than 400 associates from around the world gathered in the Detroit area for DENSO’s first Global New Year Ceremony event. Check out highlights from the event below, and shout-out to all the people who helped make it a success.
Stay tuned throughout the month to learn more about President Arima’s message, his vision for our future, and expectations for associates.
For the first time in DENSO’s history, President Koji Arima delivers the New Year Message to associates from North America.
Associates pack more than 500 toiletry bags for The Children’s Center, with the help of DENSO Cobotta robot.
Old friends and new: Associates of all levels, and from various regions around the world, strike a pose at the photo booth to commemorate their experience.
Celebrating Brand Champions: The New Year Ceremony Project Team present special gifts to representatives from AFCO and DWAM, and to President Koji Arima, a WWE fanatic
More photos and videos coming soon!
Every year, DENSO’s president shares a special New Year message to set the company direction, unite and inspire DENSO’s associates globally. This year was different.
For the first time in our company history, DENSO’s Global President Koji Arima gave his speech in a different region – North America. On January 9, more than 400 associates from DENSO locations around the world gathered in the metro Detroit area to hear his message in person. President Arima’s message was also live streamed to all of DENSO’s 170,000 associates across the globe.
In his speech, President Arima talked about DENSO’s second founding, the largest shift in business strategy in DENSO’s 70-year history, his vision for DENSO, and expectations for associates.
Missed the live stream?
Watch the full video of President Arima’s speech below. (approximate time: 30 minutes)
What did you think of President Arima’s message?
Share your comments below! What inspired you most, what questions do you have, what will you do differently in 2019.
DENSO announced its financial results for the first-half ending September 30, 2018 for fiscal year ending March 31, 2019:
“DENSO’s revenue rose due to an increase in global vehicle production in spite of natural disasters. In addition, newly consolidated subsidiary, DENSO TEN, contributed to growth in revenue. Operating profit decreased due to transient profit in the last fiscal year, variance of periods in collecting expenses and increase in investment for future growth toward becoming a leading mobility supplier,” said Koji Arima, global president and CEO of DENSO Corporation.
North American Results
In North America, sales expansion led to the increase in revenue. Operating profit decreased due to the increase in expenses for R&D and investments for expanding production capabilities.
Click here to view DENSO’s financial forecast and financial results for other regions.
As you likely heard, we recently announced DENSO’s second founding. What does this mean? It’s our largest shift in business strategy in our 70-year history to face the rapid changes in the automotive industry, the competition, ensure future success and achieve our 2030 goals. To learn more about DENSO’s vision and commitment to becoming the leading global mobility supplier, click here for the full news release.
With the news now public, DENSO’s North America President, Ken Ito, and Senior Vice President of Engineering Bill Foy spoke with leading industry news publication Automotive News about DENSO’s transformation. Ito said it’s important for the company to innovate with new technology, but also to enhance our current offerings.
“Our question is how we can transform our commodity products by adding value,” Ito told Automotive News. “For example, the air conditioner. As it is today, it could become a commodity. But in the future, instead, it could be combined with safety functions to add value, or combined with the functions of autonomous driving. We are focused on finding new value.”
The article also shares more details about DENSO’s renewed R&D and technology focus, which includes cloud computing and artificial intelligence. Still, Foy said even as DENSO moves into new fields, it will not abandon the many product areas that have been – and still are – critical for automakers.
It is this unique expertise and capability in legacy technologies and new ones that position us well for the future and will allow us to achieve our Long-Term Policy 2030. Everyone has an important role to play in our strategy shift and as we continue to shape the future of transportation – from car sharing, to automated driving and connecting cars and cities.
Read the Automotive News story here.
The automotive industry is facing a time of change. As we learn to integrate and develop connected, autonomous and electric vehicle technologies, we need to shift our approach to work and how we do business.
“Companies need to move very quickly, perhaps at ten times the previous speed, to meet the new market demands,” according to DENSO Vice President Britt Autry.
Located in Maryville, Tennessee, Autry oversees manufacturing of electronic parts, metric improvement for our suppliers, and efficient conveyance operations for parts and products in our network. This month, Autry sat down with Manufacturing Leadership Council to discuss how DENSO’s core foundation will help strengthen its competitiveness.
“DENSO established the tagline ‘Crafting the Core’ which means knowing your core strength and leveraging it for achievement. Manufacturers that have an established and sustainable core will have the best opportunity to succeed. Also, companies that strategically leverage external expertise can better align their organizations with the next opportunities.”
Autry also touched on his leadership philosophy, and what he believes our leaders need to help DENSO succeed:
“With advancements in information technology, one of the challenges for leaders is to keep the primary focus on workplace engagement. I use a “3L” concept that stands for Listening to others, Learning from the environment around you, and Leading the organization. Leaders have to develop good personal relationships as well as continuously scan industry developments,” said Autry. “Company leaders must articulate a clear vision based on emerging information, guide the organization achievement through inspiring the team, and strengthen competitiveness.”
Read the full interview here.
Jack Helmboldt wears many hats. He is the president of DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee, overseeing our mobility systems and manufacturing businesses in North America, and sits on the board of DENSO International America and on the executive committee in Japan. But ask Jack about his most important role, and you might be surprised by his response. Recently, Jack traded his sports coat for steel-toed boots, so he could spend more time on the plant floor meeting and mentoring associates.
Why did you decide to spend more time in the plant than on a plane?
I was finding that my message about what we need to accomplish to be successful as a business, wasn’t making it to the floor. Or, by the time it did, it was jumbled. I’ve been talking to associates and asking them questions like, does your boss tell you what to do? Do they tell you why it’s important? Do they tell you how to accomplish it? Good leaders should give clear direction, but at the same time, we want our associates to take personal responsibility of what they want to do or try to do in their careers.
What’s the best way to advance your career?
Understanding engagement and ownership. I tell my management team that they can ask for my help on anything and in any situation, and I will tell them exactly what I would do. No one should be afraid to ask questions. But, the best way to learn is by taking ownership and working out a problem by yourself. You and I can reach the same conclusion in two totally different ways.
How do you take ownership at such a large company like DENSO?
Move away from what I call the “silo mentality.” We’re all in this together. If your line is working properly, but your colleague’s isn’t, that’s your problem too. We need to work across lines to ensure everything is running smoothly on a regular basis. Taking a step back to see the bigger picture opens the door to more opportunities.
What makes a good leader?
Be an innovator. This doesn’t mean you need to be creative. It means you act to make us better. You see and seek out opportunities for improvement. You learn from people, from other plants, or other countries and you add those skills to your toolbox, which is critical as the auto industry undergoes massive changes.
Be a motivator. People around you should see you as being honest, credible, confident and a good listener. Take the time to talk to people, develop trust, and share information that can help them be better.
Be a visionary. This isn’t a goal or objective; it’s envisioning an ideal situation for the business and the company. My vision is that everyone who works here is happy and wants their kids and grandkids to work here someday. It will take time, and I’m setting milestones to realize that vision.
Finally, be a good teacher. I’m proud to be the president of DMTN, but that’s not how I want to be remembered. I want people to remember me as a good mentor or coach who recognized and cultivated talent, gave them opportunities to succeed, and helped them establish good habits and modify bad ones.
Anything else to add?
Be appreciative of good work. If someone goes above and beyond, take the time to thank them. I have a stack of cards on my desk, and I’m constantly sending them out because I see our associates doing such great things.
Communication is powerful. It helps build knowledge, skills and relationships. It also has the power to engage us. As a leader at DENSO, I know it’s my responsibility to help engage associates through communication.
Today, I would like to share a video message with you. My message explains our first-quarter financial results, the potential impact of automotive tariffs, and upcoming leadership changes that impact DENSO in North America.
I hope this message helps you better understand—and feel more connected to—our company direction, financials, and external factors that may impact us.
– Kenichiro Ito, CEO of DENSO in North America
At the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), we talked to Ridecell & ThinCI about our strategic partnerships & business opportunities. Our Senior Vice President of Engineering Bill Foy, and Tony Cannestra, director of Corporate Ventures, also weigh-in on why DENSO is partnering up.
You’ll hear more about our partnerships with these companies & others in months to come—stay tuned!
Bill Foy, senior vice president of Engineering at DENSO, and Tony Cannestra, director of Corporate Ventures, talk about why venture capital is an important, strategic move for DENSO.
Not only does investing in entrepreneurs and startups allow us to strengthen and grow our core automotive business, it allows us to branch out into new, emerging technology and non-automotive business areas. It also pushes DENSO to think differently.
Learn more from Bill and Tony in the video below:
By 2050, our population will reach an estimated 9 billion. At that rate, the amount of CO2 and human waste is predicted to rise to 4 times the Earth’s natural ability to self-clean. Earth will become uninhabitable.
DENSO is committed to improving Earth’s health. EcoVision 2025 is our 10-year environmental policy and action plan to help resolve environmental and energy issues and conduct business in harmony with nature.
Bob Townsend, DENSO’s vice president of External Affairs, shares more about our vision to help preserve our planet.
Why did DENSO create EcoVision 2025?
Concern for our environment is not new. DENSO originated in rural Japan, and it was there we learned important lessons about our environmental impact. Early in the company, we accidentally released drainage into farmland, destroying crops. After that, we made a commitment that such an accident would never happen again.
We launched the first EcoVision policy in 1997, so this initiative has been in place for more than 20 years.
How does DENSO’s plan help create sustainable communities?
As a member of the automotive industry, we have two potentially negative impacts on society. Traffic accidents, and a lot of our efforts are focused on improving safety, and the environment. As a company, we want to reduce that impact on the planet.
To achieve this, our products, factories, associates and management all play a critical role in our 10-step action plan, which targets three primary areas: Energy, Clean and Green.
What are the main objectives for EcoVision 2050?
The 10-step action plan is designed to help us achieve three primary objectives:
How will we make our products cleaner?
Within product development, DENSO will contribute to reducing CO2 emissions from vehicles through the development of new technologies and products that improve fuel consumption and are compatible with a variety of fuels. As we develop new product lines, we’ll develop smaller and more efficient equipment to shrink our impact.
How can we make our plants greener?
We will promote reductions in waste and resource usage within logistics and at factories. One thing to keep in mind – if your plant is doing something successful, share it! We can learn from each other.
For example, our plant in Tennessee uses a small ice machine on-site to make ice at night. In the morning, the ice is used to cool equipment, reducing hazardous waste and overall energy use. And in Guelph, our factory recently replaced all its florescent lights with LED equivalents, generating 240 tons in CO2 savings.
How can associates make an impact?
We try to raise environmental awareness among our employees and their communities. We’ve been organizing events that promote improved employee awareness and engagement. Environmental education is critical to ensure that we’re all engaging in activities that preserve the environment and create sustainable societies.
At DENSO Manufacturing Athens Tennessee, we established a community EcoPark. The 11.5 acres draws local students and families to relax and enjoy nature, and provides opportunities to learn about recycling, composting, pollution prevention and much more.
In addition, I would encourage all our associates to consider low-carbon transportation, educate themselves about how to be more consciousness about the choices that impact the Earth, and volunteer their time toward environmental protection activities.
Anything else to add?
I love talking about EcoVision. It’s part of who we are, it’s the right thing to do, it shows our associates and future workers how we’re contributing to the environment and society overall. Transportation and mobility is changing quickly, and so are people’s expectations of the companies they work for and partner with. DENSO plans to stay at the forefront of both.
DENSO, and our affiliate Michigan Automotive Compressor Inc. (MACI), were honored as top-performing global suppliers for Ford Motor Company at the 20th Annual World Excellence Awards. Only 30 companies were selected as finalists from thousands of Ford suppliers globally.
“I would like to extend my personal congratulations to DENSO and its associates, the entire MACI team and the Ford sales team for achieving this award. At DENSO, our core focus is producing and developing high-quality, innovative products and technologies that address the changes happening within the automotive industry while exceeding customers’ expectations,” said Thomas Esser, vice president, Global Ford Sales, DENSO.
DENSO was awarded Ford’s World Excellence Award for Quality. MACI was recognized for the third time, receiving the Gold World Excellence Award for excelling in the categories of Cost, Quality, and Delivery. MACI manufactures automotive air conditioning compressors with magnetic clutch for Ford and other customers like Honda, GM, Chrysler and Toyota. As the main component of the air conditioning system, MACI’s compressors play an integral role in keeping drivers and passengers comfortable in warm weather.
“Every associate in MACI works toward one goal – to satisfy our customers,” said Joe Shaughnessy, General Manager, Business Planning, Human Resources, Information Systems, Production Control at MACI. “This is our top priority. It is so gratifying to receive such an elite award that recognizes our team’s collective efforts.”
About Michigan Automotive Compressor Inc.
Established in 1989, Michigan Automotive Compressor Inc. (MACI) is a joint-venture between Toyota Industries Corporation (TICO) and DENSO Corporation. It is the largest manufacturing employer in Jackson County, with over 1 million square feet, and more than 1,050 associates. MACI sells approximately 6 million compressors of all types each year, for many of the world’s most popular vehicles. GM and FCA-Chrysler are the largest customers by volume. Ford, Toyota, Honda, Freightliner and John Deere also are customers.
This month, more than 200 leaders from across the globe headed to DENSO’s global headquarters in Japan for the annual Global Leadership Conference. Leaders showcased new activities in their regions, discussed challenges, and talked opportunities as we all work toward our global long-term 2030 vision, and 2025 goals.
Click on the video below to hear Kara Grasso, vice president of Sales in Southfield, Mich., share an overview of the topics and themes from this year’s global conference, including what North America presented.
For North America, Bill Foy, senior vice president of Engineering, presented on the importance of our role globally for DENSO, and our plans to strengthen regional management. The automotive industry is shifting to focus more on electrification, connected and autonomous technologies. This shift is being led mainly in the North America region, which is why DENSO in North America is in a position to play a bigger role in these areas for DENSO globally.
Friday qualifying ended on a high note for DENSO with three (provisional) #1 Qualifiers powered by DENSO: Matt Smith, Pro Stock Motorcycle; Greg Anderson, Pro Stock Car; and Clay Millican, Top Fuel.
Clay set a new track record with his 3.758-second, 331.12 mph pass on Friday night. His low ET and top speed held solid for the remainder of the event. This headline was picked up by NBC Sports and ABC News. (Ultimately, Clay will go out in the second round of eliminations on Sunday, losing by a very narrow margin – just two 100ths of a second to Mike Salinas)
12 of the top 16 qualifiers in Pro Stock car were powered by DENSO spark plugs
Blake Alexander, sponsored by the Pronto Group went all the way to the finals on Sunday. Blake is another Top Fuel driver (same class as Clay) who displays a DENSO Vehicle MRI decal on his car. Blake doesn’t race the full season and took down Antron Brown in the first round.
Sunday Event Winners – Powered by DENSO:
Pro Stock Motorcycle – Eddie Krawiec, Vance & Hines/Harley-Davidson
Stock Eliminator – Jeff Strickland
Competition Eliminator – Van Puckett
Super Street – Keith Mayers
As part of our strategy to create a future with frictionless mobility, DENSO acquired a startup called InfiniteKey, Inc., a mobile phone software maker. From start to finish, the acquisition closed in three short months and now, working alongside InfiniteKey, we have the technology, patents and R&D resources to create a headache-free driving experience.
DENSO is taking an aggressive approach to supporting startups and technologies we view as significantly valuable for the future of the transportation industry. Whether it’s through direct investment or acquisition, we will find a way to support and partner with companies to help transform mobility.
With the introduction of DENSO’s Crafting the Core brand, you’re going to be hearing a lot about what’s at the core of DENSO. And you can rest assured that there’s a lot there. Our associates are the core of everything we do. Our unwavering commitment to quality and safety is at the core of products. Our company strives to be a core part of our communities. And there’s much more. Since you are what’s at our core, we want to know what’s at your core. What drives you to wake up every day, head to work and ensure nothing but the very best products go out our doors bearing the DENSO name?
Scroll down and submit your story using the red “contact us” button on the bottom left hand side of the page.
Communications, Corporate Services & Compensation (Battle Creek, Mich.)
Creating Connections: Throughout my career at DENSO in Communications and HR, I’ve enjoyed the opportunity to create connections, whether that’s connecting an associate recognition story to the DENSO Spirit, or helping associates feel connected to the company’s mission, or using data to connect the dots and address HR problems. Telling great stories and creating connections can be a powerful way to inspire people to action!
Vice President of DENSO Thermal North America Center HVAC & PIC (Battle Creek, Mich.)
Relentless: Nothing of any significant value comes ‘easy’, therefore our objective must be continuously ‘sought’ with desire and courage. Pursuit: Continuous, intentional action!
Excellence: A high quality of life necessitates that we individually and collectively commit to add unique, extraordinary value through our God given gifts and abilities.
Marketing Supervisor (Long Beach, Calif.)
Stay Humble, Hustle Hard: Stay humble is an inspiration of how to be – grateful for the job I have and position I hold here at DENSO. Hustle hard serves as a reminder of who I am – a hard worker.
Senior Vice President (Long, Beach, Calif.)
Authentic: As a leader and face to our customers, I believe it’s important to be genuine and represent my true nature or beliefs. I feel it’s important to be reliable and trustworthy. This transfers to our DENSO quality standards to provide value through reliability and trust in our brand.
President (Battle Creek, Mich.)
Leadership = Vision + Passion: Success depends on people! One of my personal missions is to develop good leaders. With this equation, I wanted to illustrate a few of the components which need to be in your core.
Senior Vice President (Long Beach, Calif.)
Passion: Our associates must address each DENSO strategy with a passion to exceed expectations. Be inspired to live each day with a passion to make a difference in your family, personal life, and professional career.
Communications (Maryville, TN)
Community: As our company grows, community involvement becomes even more important. If every DENSO location is active in the community, then the entire world will know that DENSO is working every day to protect lives, preserve the planet and prepare a bright future for our generations to come.
Senior Vice President, Engineering (Southfield, Mich.)
Passion: Passion is important. I encourage my team to dedicate 10 percent of their time on something they’re passionate about because it drives their energy, commitment and focus. Who knows where it could lead.
Vice President (Maryville, TN)
Building Trust, Growth Mindset: Building trust is a growth mindset. Through the challenge and the struggle, we gain insight and knowledge that can propel us to new, higher levels of understanding and achievement.
Engineer (Southfield, Mich.)
Problem Solver: As an automotive engineer, we solve a spectrum of problems, from energy efficiency and constantly improving passenger safety while reducing injuries and deaths caused by automobile accidents, to minor ones like troubleshooting a malfunctioning circuit.
Vice President (Maryville, TN)
Courage to Change: As I have rotated from one division to another, I can feel the positive impact of my personal and professional changes through working in different business environments in a relatively short term. Similarly, DENSO is faced with paradigm shifts in the future automobile society, so as an organization, we need the “Courage to Change” our way of doing things to thrive in this new and challenging environment.
Finance & Accounting (Southfield, Mich.)
Overcome Challenge: We are all faced with different challenges in our work and personal lives, and learning how to navigate through those challenges successfully usually makes us stronger and better people.
Norihito “Jack” Tanahashi
Senior Vice President (Long Beach, Calif.)
Professional Breakthrough: Being a professional means meeting and exceeding expectations to best serve customers, companies and society. Professionals succeed when they take responsibility and act to make progress. Motivated by an unwavering commitment to our customers, companies and society, this initiative produces breakthroughs that benefit everyone.
President (Maryville, TN)
Exporting Talent: To me, the key to ‘Crafting the Core’ is to strengthen our management through organizational transformation, to develop future leaders. I want to develop leaders to support DENSO globally, not just at our Tennessee facility, as DENSO continues to grow.
Human Resources (Southfield, Mich.)
Making a Difference: This is my main purpose in life, personally and professionally. Being an inspiration to people does not require a whole of effort or expertise; patience and understanding goes a long way.
Administrative Professional (Battle Creek, Mich.)
Blessed: I feel that everything I am and have is because God blessed me with my job and has allowed me to be a vessel to help others every day.
Haruhiko “Hal” Kato
President (Long Beach, Calif.)
Ownership & Dream: Making a dream come true requires great passion. However, passion alone is not enough. If you are not fully committed to making it happen, you are literally just dreaming. In other words, a dream without the commitment to follow through will not drive you to take action. Making the commitment and taking ownership are what transform dreams into reality.
Security & Emergency Response (Battle Creek, Mich.)
Be Ready: My passion is in encouraging others to be prepared for emergencies. Emergency preparedness, in my opinion, is key to long term wellness, whether as a business or as an individual.
Engineer (Southfield, Mich.)
Accountability: Regardless of who I’m working with, or what project I’m working on, I want people to know they can count on me to deliver. Working relationships are so important at a company like DENSO, and I think accountability is key in achieving that.
Engineer (Southfield, Mich.)
Collective Love: It’s our job, collectively, to infuse love into our products, to be thoughtful in the design, evaluation and production. We must ensure the safety of our end-users, our loved ones.
Purchasing (Battle Creek, Mich.)
Meaning Drives Purpose. Value Drives Creation: It’s very important to me to understand “The Why”— why my job or any specific task is important to the success of the company. Once I understand my value, it really drives me to be successful for DENSO.
Community Affairs (Southfield, Mich.)
Our Future: My role within DENSO is to create opportunities to support talent development, student engagement, community outreach, and road safety awareness. In this role, I’m actively working on projects for the future of DENSO, our communities and my own family.
David H. Williams
Director of OES Sales Planning & Marketing (Long Beach, Calif.)
Vision & Integrity: A leader is ultimately the keeper of the dream, an ideal for others to rally behind. A leader’s integrity is measured by how closely they follow their own vision while adhering to the values of the organization.
Corporate Communications (Southfield, Mich.)
People and their stories: People and their stories are what inspire and motivate me everyday at DENSO. I want to help influence change and make improvements at DENSO by sharing associate stories and best practices we can all learn from.
DENSO announced its global financial results for the first half of the fiscal year that ends March 31, 2018:
“DENSO’s revenue increased due to an increase in vehicle production, as well as sales expansion. DENSO’s operating profit also saw an increase due to the production volume increase and company cost reduction efforts,” said Koji Arima, president and CEO of DENSO Corporation.
In Japan, a rise in vehicle production resulted in an increase in revenue to 1,406.9 billion yen (US$12.5 billion), an 8.9 percent growth from the previous year. As a result of the increase in production volume and cost reduction efforts, the operating profit totaled 105.5 billion yen (US$935.8 million), a 100.7 percent increase from the previous year.
In North America, a sales expansion led to an increase in revenue to 548.1 billion yen (US$4.9 billion), a 6.1 percent increase from the previous year. On the other hand, the operating profit totaled 20.8 billion yen (US$184.5 million), which resulted in a 29.5 percent decrease from the previous year due, which is attributed to depreciation increases.
In Europe, the slight rise in vehicle production by the moderate recovery of the market led to an increase in revenue to 309.9 billion yen (US$2.7 billion), a 10.6 percent increase from the previous year. Due to depreciation increases, operating profit decreased to 8.9 billion yen (US$78.7 million), a 5.1 percent decrease from the previous year.
In Asia, an increase in both vehicle production and sales expansion resulted in an increase in revenue to 619.2 billion yen (US$5.5 billion), a 14.8 percent rise from the previous year. As a result of the increase in production volume, an operating profit totaled 62.8 billion yen (US$557.5 million), a 36.3 percent growth from the previous year.
In other areas, mainly the South American region, including Brazil and Argentina, revenue totaled 40.4 billion yen (US$358.7 million), a 32.7 percent increase from the previous year. The operating profit totaled 7.1 billion yen (US$62.8 million).
“After considering our first-half financial results, and the latest movement in the foreign exchange markets, we have revised up our full-year financial result forecasts. We also revised up dividend payment for both of interim and fiscal year-end,” said Koji Arima.
(Foreign exchange rates used for the full-year are US$= 111 yen, Euro= 126 yen)
Forecast for Fiscal Year Ending March 31, 2018
|Revenue||4,740 billion yen
|5,000 billion yen
|Operating profit||353 billion yen
|390 billion yen
|Profit before income taxes||388 billion yen
|430 billion yen
|Profit attributable to owners of the parent company||280 billion yen
|300 billion yen
DENSO is one of the largest automotive suppliers in the world with a growing satellite office in Dublin, Ohio, which supports Honda. Bryan Starr, senior manager, shares the benefits of working and living in Dublin, Ohio:
DENSO Corporation announced its global financial results for the first quarter ending June 30, 2017 for fiscal year ending March 31, 2018:
“DENSO’s revenue increased by the increase of car production and sales expansion as well as operating profit due to the production volume increase and cost reduction efforts.” said Yasushi Matsui, executive director of DENSO Corporation.
In Japan, the increase of car production led to an increase in revenue to 675.7 billion yen (US$6.0 billion), a 9.6 percent increase from the previous year. As a result of the increase in production volume and cost reduction efforts, the operating profit totaled 37.4 billion yen (US$333.5 million), a 163.8 percent increase from the previous year.
In North America, despite of an unpredictable economy, the increase of car production led to an increase in revenue to 281.0 billion yen (US$2.5 billion), a 5.6 percent increase from the previous year. As a result, the operating profit totaled 17.0 billion yen (US$151.5 million), a 2.3 percent increase from the previous year.
In Europe, the increase of car production by the moderate recovery of the market led to an increase in revenue to 159.6 billion yen (US$1.4 billion), a 3.3 percent increase from the previous year. On the other hand, due to depreciation increase, operating profit decreased to 5.8 billion yen (US$52.1 million), a 14.7 percent decrease from the previous year.
In Asia, increase of car production and sales expansion, a revenue increase to 299.6 billion yen (US$2.7 billion), a 7.7 percent increase from the previous year. As a result of the increase in production volume, an operating profit totaled 28.5 billion yen (US$254.5 million), a 16.5 percent increase from the previous year.
In other areas, mainly the South American region, including Brazil and Argentina, revenue totaled 19.1 billion yen (US$170.8 million), a 21.9 percent increase from the previous year. The operating profit totaled 3.3 billion yen (US$29.9 million).
“Considering the latest movement in the foreign exchange markets and increase of car production, we have revised up our financial result forecasts for the first-half and full-year,” said Matsui.
(Foreign exchange rates used for the first-half financial result forecast are US$= 111yen Euro=121 yen, and for the full-year are US$= 110 yen, Euro= 121 yen)
Forecast for Fiscal Year Ending March 31, 2018
|First-Half Forecast (Revised)||Full-Year Forecast (Revised)||Changes from Previous FY|
|Revenue||2,330.0 billion yen
|4,740.0 billion yen
|+212.9 billion yen
|Operating profit||161.0 billion yen
|353.0 billion yen
|+22.4 billion yen
|Profit before income taxes||179.0 billion yen
|388.0 billion yen
|+27.1 billion yen
|Profit attributable to owners of the parent company||123.0 billion yen
|280.0 billion yen
|+22.4 billion yen