September 27, 2010,09:04 +0900(JST) Visiting Paris
Two weeks ago, I visited Paris for the first time in a long while (in May I breezed through Paris in transit). Unlike in Japan, where the weather was still scorching hot, the weather was quite refreshing in Paris in mid-September. This photo was taken when I visited the Paris office of Sumitomo Electric Wiring Systems (Europe) Ltd. (SEWS-E), a Group company.
SEWS-E was originally established in January 1990 as a joint venture between Sumitomo Electric and the British Lucas Rists Wiring Systems. At that time, I was stationed in London and represented Sumitomo Electric in the negotiations leading to the joint venture agreement.
In July 1999, the joint venture became a wholly owned Sumitomo Electric subsidiary and changed its name to the present one. Since I was its Director from its inception in 1990 until 2004, I feel a special attachment to this company, as if it were one of my "favorite sons" among the Group companies in Europe.
At present, SEWS-E operates in 14 countries, mainly in Europe but also in Morocco (famous for Casablanca) and Egypt, manufacturing and selling wiring harnesses and related products with over 10,000 employees in total.
Europe is currently going through a major transitional period following the economic and financial crisis. I believe that times like these offer great opportunities for the company to enhance its trustworthiness as a global supplier. It must attentively respond to a range of customer needs regarding new technologies, cost, etc. with a "customer first" attitude, drawing on Sumitomo Electric Group's broad R&D power and organizational strengths. This is how I encouraged the SEWS-E personnel so that they will continue doing their very best and achieve the Group's goal of 25% share in the global market in fiscal 2012.
I believe that my usual long-distance communication with Mr. Mike Lawson, SEWS-E president, and other executives is working fine, but I'm also aware of the importance of face-to-face communication. Seeing them in person and deepening our mutual understanding, I was happy to be able to renew our commitment to working hard together toward our shared goals.
SEWS-E website: http://www.sews-e.com/