Mitsubishi Heavy to combine shipbuilding design teams for overhaul
Reorganization lets company test waters for possible spinoff
TOKYO -- Mitsubishi Heavy Industries will consolidate shipbuilding design and engineering workforces now scattered around Japan as part of an effort to revive its vessel business.
The move creates a roughly 130-member team that will handle all steps from design and development to parts procurement and sales.
A global vessel glut has hit Mitsubishi Heavy's shipbuilding business hard, prompting the company to consider spinning the operation off.
The structural overhaul will enable the Japanese company to prepare for such potential restructuring while enhancing efficiency.
Engineers now at the Tokyo headquarters and the Nagasaki and Shimonoseki shipyards in southern Japan will be brought under a new vessel and marine technology center in Yokohama as of July 1.
The center, which will oversee production sites, will also tie up with peers such as Imabari Shipbuilding, Japan's top shipbuilder in terms of tonnage, and Namura Shipbuilding, entrusting part of construction of large container vessels to them.
The consolidation will mean faster designing of vessels with high added value and quicker development of energy-saving technologies. Mitsubishi Heavy's center may also design vessels ordered for Imabari or Namura.