Hitachi hones company structure to focus on digital, innovation and environment | ZDNet

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Accelerating growth through digital, innovation, and its environmental goals are high on the agenda for Hitachi, which has announced that it will restructure its business to reflect these commitments.

The changes, effective as of April 1, will see it simplify its management structure based on three sectors — digital systems and services, green energy and mobility, and connective industries — while still maintaining its current business unit structure.

Under the plan, the current US-based Hitachi Global Digital Holdings — the holding company that oversees Hitachi Vantara and Hitachi Consulting — will be renamed to Hitachi Digital, and will be responsible for implementing global digital strategies across the entire Hitachi Group.

At the same time, current chairman and CEO of Hitachi Digital Toshiaki Tokunaga will take on the role as chairman of the digital systems and services unit, while Jun Taniguchi, current president of Hitachi Global Life Solutions, will be appointed CEO.

GlobalLogic CEO Shashank Samant, meanwhile, will serve as an executive advisor to Tokunaga and support Hitachi Group’s overall digital business strategy, while Hitachi Vantara CEO Gajen Kandiah will undertake a concurrent position as chief digital transformation officer of the new digital systems and services business.

“He [Kandiah] will apply insights of the cloud and data applications, which are the core strengths of Hitachi Vantara, to expand the Hitachi Group’s service business, and to transform the group as a whole into a world-class digital solution provider,” the company said.

In terms of achieving its innovation goal, Hitachi said the current future investment division and corporate venturing office will be combined to establish the growth strategy division, with president Keiji Kojima to hold a concurrent position as general manager.

“This division will strengthen ties with R&D groups, startup companies, and other entities, undertaking strategic investments to bring about innovations through new technologies and business models, and will lead the next stage of growth for Hitachi,” Hitachi said.

Other changes will include Lorena Dellagiovanna being appointed to the newly created position of chief sustainability officer, while holding existing concurrent positions as head of environment and chief diversity and inclusion officer, and current SVP CFO Yoshihiko Kawamura being appointed as EVP and concurrently holding the new position of chief risk management officer. 

This latest changes follow the Japanese giant announcing last week that it will be establishing Hitachi Automation to accelerate its position in the robotic systems integration business in Japan and ASEAN countries. 

Hitachi Automation, the company said, will reside under Hitachi’s industry and distribution business unit, plus the robotic systems integration business involving assembly and conveyor lines for all kinds of manufacturers will transferred from Hitachi Industrial Equipment Systems, a Hitachi subsidiary, to KEC Corporation, a Hitachi Industrial Equipment Systems subsidiary, that handles robotic systems integration mainly for the automobile industry. 

“The needs for automation have been increasing rapidly in the manufacturing industry due to a shortage of labour, the retirement of highly skilled workers, and a decrease in production engineers. Against this backdrop, Hitachi has focused on the reinforcement of its robotic SI business through mergers and acquisitions in Japan and in the US over the past few years,” Hitachi industry and distribution CEO Kazunobu Morita said.

“I am confident that Hitachi Automation, which will be established by reorganizing and integrating the resources of the group, will contribute to solutions to the problems faced by customers in manufacturing industries in Japan and ASEAN countries.” 

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