Message from the President
Environmental and Social Contributions are the Strength Behind the Kobe Steel Group's Future Growth.
We will carve a new vision based on action.
Since its founding, the Kobe Steel Group has pursued manufacturing in a variety of fields, helping to reduce environmental impact and support industry and society. Environmental and social contributions are fundamental to the operations of the Group.
With implementation of our medium- to long-term business vision, KOBELCO VISION "G," strengthening manufacturing capabilities and contributing to society have become vital pillars of the Kobe Steel Group. I see implementation of this vision as my personal mission, and am working to revolutionize operations so as to contribute further to Group growth and environmental and social contribution.
My daily byword, meanwhile, is "action." Building on our previous president's (current Chairman Hiroshi Sato) dedication to "barrier-free" management, I hope to overcome the walls in our organization to mobilize myself and others and carve out a new future for the Group.
Contributing to the future with "Only One" products, we will strengthen our manufacturing capabilities.
The Kobe Steel Group focuses on materials businesses such as steel, welding, aluminum, copper and other materials, while machinery businesses include industrial and construction machinery, engineering, and environmental solutions. Our wide variety of businesses includes wholesale power supply, real estate and electronic materials. We refer to our ability to offer products and technologies with original added value in this wide range of fields as KOBELCO's "Only One" advantage.
Among our many offerings are a wealth of products and technologies that help reduce environmental impact, effectively utilize underused energy sources, and address the pressing issues faced by society. We consider contributing to the environment and society to be one of our most important missions.
In order to effectively strengthen our monozukuri-ryoku or manufacturing capabilities, the MONODZUKURI (Production System Innovation) Planning & Promotion Department was established at the Head Office in fiscal 2010. This cross-divisional, Groupwide initiative for sharing cutting-edge information is intended to accelerate the development of new products and manufacturing technologies. These efforts will contribute to the creation of new "Only One" products and technologies.
The development of technologies for environmental conservation will accelerate Groupwide growth.
The strengthening of monozukuri-ryoku (manufacturing capabilities) is a major pillar of our future environmental management. The development of products with greater added value will allow us to contribute greatly to conservation of the global environment.
For instance, Kobe Steel products such as high-strength steel sheet and aluminum promote the lightweighting of automobiles, contributing to improved fuel consumption and reduced CO2 emissions. The greater use of multi-materials, such as the optimal use of high strength steels and aluminum alloys, can only be expected to grow stronger in this field. Responding to this trend by developing technologies and widening our scope of offerings will in turn lead to new growth for the Group.
Kobe Steel is developing new eco-businesses, with a firm gaze on the future of energy and society.
Kobe Steel has adopted a strong approach to new energy. Through development of new technologies, such as binary generation systems to make effective use of thermal energy from hot springs, and SteamStar generators, which utilize previously unused steam at small and medium-scale factories, we contribute to energy conservation and reduced CO2 emissions. Additionally, working in conjunction with organizations such as Kobe City and Osaka Gas Co., Ltd., we are carrying out trials into using biogas produced from sewage sludge as municipal gas and automobile fuel. By utilizing our proprietary technologies to make effective use of unutilized energy sources, we are uncovering new and groundbreaking possibilities.
The technology behind hydrogen stations for the supply of fuel-cell vehicles is also on the verge of commercialization. Through comprehensive development of hydrogen generators, high-pressure hydrogen compressors, and other technologies necessary for the realization of hydrogen stations, we aim to establish a foundation for the hydrogen station industry.
To earn the love and support of local communities, we engage in a diverse range of social contributions.
With bases both in Japan and throughout the world, Kobe Steel believes that social contribution is an integral aspect of the Group's operations. Aiming to win the love and support of local communities, we engage in a wide range of activities, including roadside cleanups, factory trips for local students, and the creation of green tracts of land and biotopes.
For instance, in Yamaguchi Prefecture, Kobe Steel's Chofu Works as well as nearby Group companies care for approximately 200 cherry trees planted along national highways in front of the plants. After many long years of greenification, the trees have become a familiar sight to local residents. We have also begun new initiatives, such as forest development at two locations in Hyogo Prefecture and participation in environmental education outreach programs carried out by Kobe City at local children's centers. As one new initiative, in fiscal 2013 we implemented the KOBELCO Forest Fairy Tale Prize, helping to nurture children who carry the next generation on their shoulders.
The Kobe Steel Group also focuses on contributing to society through sports. Since 2005, in conjunction with the KOBELCO Cup, a special event to help popularize rugby, we have also held boys' rugby camps open to high school students from across the country. In 2012 the camps were also opened to girls. With seven-member rugby as an official event at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics, we hope to cultivate as many students as possible with the possibility of playing in the Olympic games.
Additionally, in order to contribute to the physical education of children, SCIX, an NPO supported by Kobe Steel, invites children to local sports grounds to participate in an original sport known as "Spaceball."
In the future, we plan to continue contributing to local communities through activities such as these.
Compliance relies on the eyes and ears of each employee.
Safety and compliance are at the root of all of the Kobe Steel Group's operations. For the Group, compliance goes a step beyond legal and regulatory requirements. For instance, even when permitted by law, the Group does not engage in any actions which would be problematic for local residents or customers. We consider this approach to be good common sense, and entrust all our employees with policing their work and surroundings. Compliance requires the eyes and ears of each and every employee.
One of my personal hobbies is to cultivate roses, but to ensure beautiful roses requires diligent care. However, it is precisely because of this toil that the roses which bloom are so exceptional. Likewise, as we look to the future, I hope to make use of our strengths and resourcefulness to ensure that the Kobe Steel Group's environmental and social contributions continue to thrive and blossom.
President , CEO and Representative Director
Kobe Steel, Ltd