Japanese car executive Satoru Suzuki assumed leadership at the country’s biggest automotive company, Toyota Motor Philippines Corporation (TMP), following his formal introduction at the Rizal Ballroom of the Makati Shangri-La on Wednesday last week. Suzuki succeeds Michinobu Sugata, who has been assigned executive vice president of Toyota Motors Asia Pacific (TMAP) and general manager of TMAP-Japan.
During his six-year term at TMP, Sugata led the company to a sterling performance wherein Toyota maintained market dominance as evidenced by its record-breaking sales year after year.
Among the significant sales milestones achieved during Sugata’s stint is the 100,000 annual unit sales in 2014, making TMP be part of the Global Toyota 100K Club. And in 2015, TMP reached its one-million sales milestone and successfully achieved its 14th consecutive Triple Crown. Moreover, Sugata is also remarkably known for revitalizing Philippine motor sports through staging of the Toyota Vios Cup.
During the turnover ceremony, Kyoichi Tanada, Toyota Motor Corporation managing officer and chief executive officer of Asia, Middle East and North Africa Regions, congratulated TMP for achieving another new sales record of over 125,000 units in 2015, ranking fourth in Asia and 13th in Global Toyota. “This outstanding performance has contributed significantly to Team Asia Toyota,” Tanada said.
Likewise, he lauded the implementation of the Comprehensive Automotive Resurgence Strategy Program of the Philippine government in which TMP is expected to actively participate to further boost the competitiveness of the local auto manufacturing industry in the country.
During this era of great accomplishments for TMP, taking on the helm of the company’s leadership is a welcome challenge for Suzuki saying, “It is with great pleasure once again to join Team Toyota Philippines after 16 years. I am eager to build strong partnerships with you in the coming days because I firmly believe that with your firm support, we can all make a positive change to usher the country toward becoming a key player in the regional automotive scene.”
Suzuki had his first tour of duty in TMP back in 1997-1999 as Marketing vice president in charge of Sales and Product Planning operations. After his three-year stint, he joined TMAP in Singapore, where he took charge of the Philippine and Thailand markets. Then, he went back to Japan to handle project-related issues such as plant expansion and new model introductions for Asian countries. Before finally coming back to TMP as the new president, he was responsible for all sales-related issues in Asia, in both TMAP-Japan and TMAP-Singapore.