It is a little early, but I would like to thank all of you, our employees for your hard work in 2023.
Once again, let me thank you all for your efforts over the past year!
In 2023, economic activity normalized from the Corona pandemic and supply chain supply constraints were restored, but a series of events impacted the global economy, including the protracted and tense situation in Ukraine, as well as the Israeli-Palestinian military conflict.
Furthermore, the external environment remains uncertain with the slowdown of the Chinese economy and continued global inflation, but all of our employees have been "responding flexibly to changes".
The recovery in production by our customers, especially in the automotive sector, and the steady increase in orders have been hard on everyone, especially those involved in the production division, and I thank you all for doing your utmost to respond to these challenges.
Thanks to your productivity improvement activities and sales efforts, we are now on track to generate solid profits.
As for our full-year financial forecast for FY2023, which we reviewed in October, we are projecting record-high sales and business profit.
Base visits and GMM
I made overseas visits to China and Thailand in June and July, Europe in August, Mexico and Brazil in October, and China in December.
After my overseas visit, I feel that even though there has been little interaction between the headquarters and the bases over the past four years, steady improvements have been made and the companies have achieved what I asked for during my visit in 2019, which is more than I expected.
In addition, communication between work-site employees and local executives was well established.
I was very surprised and very happy at the same time.
After all, “Genchi-genbutsu” (the actual thing on the actual spot) is the origin point of Monozukuri, isn’t it?
As I have told everyone many times, please continue to keep improvement with the belief that “there is no end in kaizen activities”, which will lead to a reduction in everyone's workload.
In August, we were able to hold a GMM (Global Management Meeting) in Japan, with overseas executives participating from all the bases.
In this meeting, we shared the "Sumitomo Riko Group Vision 2029" and the "Sumitomo Riko Group Medium-Term Management Plan 2025," and executives from bases presented case studies.
We pledged to continue our group-wide quest for Monozukuri that is needed by society, always with a bird's eye view of the world.
It has been three and a half years since I took office as President!
The president's blog has been sent out more than 130 times to date.
I would like to continue to do so, and I would be happy if all employees would read it and share their impressions and ideas with me.
It has also been two years since we started our web-based Company newsletter, "Mitsukumi 2(Two).
It seems to be spreading well, and I have heard that more than 3,800 people are using it.
I hope that you will continue to enhance communication group-wide as a whole.
Year-End and New Year's Holidays
I will, as usual, move around a bit, refresh myself, and think about further developing our group toward achieving our mid-term management plan for 2024 and 2025.
I hope you all have a good New Year's holiday.
And let's all do our best next year with "Banji-nissei" in mind!