8 AKEBONO REPORT 2011 Akebono Brake Industry Co. Ltd.Welcoming a Third Phase of Transition akebono Aims for True Globalizationdevelopment of brakes. Therefore we established adevelopment center in China in January 2011. “Having aChinese associate as the leader we are conducting athorough survey including of local users’ actual usage inlocal markets ” says Nishimura. In Europe we have beenimproving our technologies as the Official Supplier ofbrakes to the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes F1 team since2007 raising our name recognition. In addition the acquisitionof Bosch’s North American business brought rotorsand materials used in pads into akebono’s product lineupand will contribute to the further cultivation of theCompany’s core technology of “Friction and Vibration their Control and Analysis” in the future. Furthermore weaim to enhance automotive fuel efficiency in response tothe movement toward global warming prevention and areto this end engaged in the development of smaller andlighter products as well as of technology to reduce brakedrag. Sharing our technological achievements and marketinformation through our global network we will proactivelypursue global R&D activities.creation of materials with low environmental burden bystrengthening alliances with suppliers and our R&D division.Simultaneously given the need for reliable operationduring such emergencies as large-scale disasters we willreduce costs and establish a global purchasing system toensure that we can continue purchasing high-quality materialsand components while considering the best way tomaintain current supply chains.Facing the issue of true globalization akebono’sR&D division indentifies quality and performance asbeing universal constants when it comes to products and develops new products for local needs based on thisunderstanding. “We need to understand what end usersneed in each local market before aiming for standardization ”Nishimura asserts. Particularly in emerging countries we need to think in fresh ways about theWith the aim of building global networks akebono’s purchasingdepartment chose the keyword “standardization”to promote the reinforcement of our purchasing structure.To this end we are striving to leverage our networks andcumulative know-how in each region while aiming to boostour competitiveness to realize low-cost operations. Inemerging countries including China on top of productquality it is important to accurately understand what specificationsare necessary to meet local needs. Our goal isto establish production activities at appropriate locationsaround the world and to offer products best suited to themarkets they are supplied to. With this objective in fiscal2011 we will invigorate communications on a global scaleto ensure proper understanding of local needs. In addition because trading involves purchasing there area number of laws and regulations to follow. Therefore purchasing is also important with regard to our responseto compliance. When there are revisions to such environmentalregulations as REACH in particular we arerequired to respond promptly and carefully. Josakoexplains “Even though the purchasing of materials andcomponents is globalized our posture toward sustainablegrowth in tandem with suppliers who have prominent technologieswill remain unchanged.” As for materials development which is key to innovation we will promote theNoboru JosakoGeneral ManagerPurchasing DepartmentPurchasing DivisionSeiji NishimuraGeneral ManagerProduct Planning Department R&D DivisionEstablishing a Global Purchasing Base to Achieve Robust Supply ChainsFor details of akebono’s development department and its R&D activities by region please see page 21.Globalization Stemming from an Understanding of Local Needs