March 15, 2016,15:25 +0900(JST) Local Distributors' Conference in China

From February 22 to 23, I stayed in Shanghai to attend a conference with local distributors for our peroducts. Since the time difference between Shanghai and Japan is only one hour, and it takes only two and half hours from Kansai International Airport, the business trip to the city made me feel as if I had traveled to another city in Japan.

Local Distributors' Conference in China

The conference was attended by dozens of individuals from local distributors and other organizations. The event included our explanation of the current business situation of the Sumitomo Electric Group, as well as the commendation of distributors demonstrating excellent sales activities.

The conference was followed by a stand-up dinner party. Forming small groups here and there in the venue, party participants were making toasts and drinking freely. This exciting scene made me realize that I was in China.

While emptying my glass, I asked some participants about the current business situation. Most of them answered that the situation was not so favorable and that it was difficult to predict the future. Since the Chinese economy continued to enjoy steady growth until just a little while ago, they seemed somewhat puzzled failing to forecast how the country's economic slowdown would turn out to be.

I'm sure that the competition in China among companies fighting for their survival will become more and more intense. To avoid getting involved in an unproductive war of attrition caused by price competition, we need to constantly place unique and value-added products in the market.

With staff members from Sumitomo Electric (Shanghai) Electronics, Ltd.

With staff members from Sumitomo Electric (Shanghai) Electronics, Ltd.

March 1, 2016,09:40 +0900(JST) Our Redox Flow Battery System Wins Award at 2015 Nikkei Superior Products and Services

Our redox flow battery system was selected as a winner of the Nikkei Sangyo Shimbun Excellent Award at the 2015 Nikkei Superior Products and Services Award. The award ceremony was held on February 3 in Tokyo.

This award is granted to products and services that were covered in the Nikkei Shimbun and related newspapers and magazines. I hear that this year, winners were selected from among about 20,000 items. The winner's list includes many products that have attracted much public attention through TV and newspapers. I feel truly honored that, ranking with such items, our redox flow battery system was selected as one of the 18 winners of the Nikkei Award for Excellence.

Unfortunately, I could not attend the award ceremony. According to Executive Vice President Takenaka, who attended the ceremony, Dr. Hiroshi Komiyama, chairman of the board of examiners, made a special reference to our redox flow battery system at the beginning of the ceremony. Dr. Komiyama encouraged us by stating in his address that our technology was truly innovative and that he would like us to lead the world's future battery technology and industry. Mr. Takenaka told me that he had been deeply moved by the chairman's comments.

We have just recently launched a demonstration experiment of our redox flow battery system in cooperation with Hokkaido Electric Power Co., Inc. Nevertheless, the item had already been selected as a winner of the Nikkei Award for Excellence. We feel that this indicates high expectations from the public, and would like to work even harder to ensure that the product lives up to the name of the award.

  • Executive Vice President Takenaka (left) receiving the award certificate

    Executive Vice President Takenaka (left) receiving the award certificate

SUMITOMO ELECTRIC President CEO Masayoshi Matsumoto

Born in 1944 in Hyogo Prefecture, Masayoshi Matsumoto joined Sumitomo Electric in 1967. After serving as General Manager of Chubu District Office, Managing Director and Senior Managing Director, he assumed office of President and CEO in June 2004.

His leisure activities include jogging, reading and art appreciation. Also a seasoned athlete, he played baseball in junior high school and practiced judo in senior high school. In university, he threw the javelin competitively and participated in all-Japan inter-university competitions.

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