Executive Lounge

Japan steel exec says China capacity cuts a ways off

TOKYO -- China's production of steel products continues to outpace demand, with surplus goods pouring into markets across the globe and pushing down prices in the process. Kosei Shindo, president of Japan's top steelmaker, Nippon Steel & Sumitomo...

  • Universal Studios Japan's Morioka makes magic with new attractions

    OSAKA -- Universal Studios Japan's new area based on the wildly popular Harry Potter franchise was conjured up by Chief Marketing Officer Tsuyoshi Morioka. Morioka was brought to USJ from Procter & Gamble in 2010 in hopes that his marketing skill...

  • Ken Kutaragi: One small step for in-car IT, one giant leap for consumers

    Android Auto drew strong attention at this year's Google I/O, an annual software developer-focused conference held in June. The platform extends the use of Google's Android operating system to automobiles. It functions by connecting users' smartphone...

  • BHP Billiton CEO talks about the planet's post-supercycle future

    SYDNEY -- The big mining, metals and petroleum multinational will invest more in the energy sector, its chief executive told The Nikkei. The coming shift is a reaction to slowing demand for iron ore, Andrew Mackenzie said. He also spoke on the end of...

  • Aeon will forge own supply chain in Southeast Asia: president

    PHNOM PENH -- As it settles new frontiers of retail in Southeast Asia, Aeon will build a logistics network to compete with rivals on price and selection, President Motoya Okada told The Nikkei. The Japanese group is accelerating its drive into th...

  • Japanese insurance CEO aims to double overseas profit in four years

    TOKYO -- Yasuyoshi Karasawa, new president and CEO of MS&AD Insurance Group Holdings told The Nikkei that he hoped to double overseas earnings by fiscal 2017, earning 39 billion yen ($381 million) overseas. The amount would be a quarter of the compan...

  • Chinese investment fund aims to spread wealth, sustainability in Asean

    China sees its relationship with the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations as strategically reciprocal. The recent proposal by President Xi Jinping to forge a regional grouping called the China-Asean Community of Common Destiny marks a new...

  • Sanrio keeps tight control over characters as it expands in Asia

    TOKYO -- Japan's Sanrio is famous as the creator of many globally popular characters, notably Hello Kitty, who celebrates her 40th birthday this year. Revenues from the licensing business in emerging markets in Asia and elsewhere are growing steadily...

  • Sharp executive emphasizes growth of value-added LCD panels for China

    TOKYO -- Sharp is gearing up to boost its supply of IGZO (indium-gallium-zinc oxide) liquid crystal display panels to Chinese smartphone makers as part of turnaround efforts for the struggling Japanese company. The Nikkei recently sat down with S...

  • Thai budget airline Nok Air to launch Japan service: CEO

    BANGKOK -- Nok Airlines plans to start offering flights between Bangkok and Tokyo's Narita Airport as early as November, the head of the Thai low-cost carrier told The Nikkei in a recent interview. Plans call for seven round trips a week, said Ch...

  • InTouch, former Shin Corp., to diversify, lower reliance on mobile carrier

    BANGKOK -- Making a fresh start with a new name, InTouch Holdings, formerly known as Shin Corp., the company founded by fugitive former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, will accelerate efforts to become a telecom conglomerate. CEO Somprasong Boonya...

  • Mori Building reaches higher, and to foreigners, to make Tokyo more global

    TOKYO -- Shingo Tsuji, the president of Mori Building, says that if Tokyo wants future urban development projects to succeed, they need to attract the rest of the world. On June 11, Mori building opened the Toranomon Hills skyscraper complex in Tokyo...

  • Yoshimoto Kogyo wants to make Asia laugh

    TOKYO -- Japanese company Yoshimoto Kogyo is a towering presence in the country's entertainment industry. Comedy is its forte, and the company is the biggest employer of comedic talent. Turn on the TV at any given time and you are likely to spot a Yo...

  • Olympus boss says medical business driving recovery

    TOKYO -- Olympus forecasts a group operating profit of 88 billion yen ($854 million) for fiscal 2014, up 20% from a year earlier. Driving that growth is the company's medical equipment segment, which controls about 70% of the global market. The J...

  • Nidec to build five plants in India: President

    OSAKA -- Nidec, the world's largest manufacturer of small motors, will build five or so factories in India by around 2023, President Shigenobu Nagamori said Wednesday. In a press conference following the company's shareholders meeting, Nagamori s...

  • Dai-ichi Life to make US pillar of growth

    TOKYO -- Dai-ichi Life Insurance is pivoting to tap the steady growth in the U.S. with an upcoming acquisition amid a shrinking home market, according to President Koichiro Watanabe. "With the population rising and economy likely to grow, we expe...

  • Japan Tobacco looks to Africa, sees possible contraction in Russia

    TOKYO -- Japan Tobacco has been aggressively pursuing global expansion through mergers and acquisitions. Yet international tensions with Russia over Ukraine are hitting the company's tobacco sales there, although the decline is narrower than that of ...

  • Japan's department stores weathering tax hike well, says association head

    TOKYO -- Department stores in Japan saw a last-minute spike in sales before April's consumption tax hike that was sharper than the last time the tax went up 17 years ago. And a post-hike drop in sales has so far been within the industry's expectation...

  • GE vice chairman: 20th century HQ an 'anachronism'

    BANGKOK -- As business activities become even more global, companies must constantly make adjustments in their operations. General Electric is a more than a 100-year-old American company with an extensive global footprint, but it is no exception. Joh...

  • Indonesia's Indosat to fight smartphone tax 'all the way'

    JAKARTA -- Alexander Rusli, CEO of Indonesian telecommunications operator Indosat, has had a tough 2013. The weakening rupiah pushed his company to a net loss that wiped out three years worth of profits. The company struggled to hold its ground again...