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January 13, 2021

Seiji Maeda to be Denso North America CEO

Denso has named Seiji Maeda CEO of its North American operations and made several management changes.

By Rhodri Morgan

Denso has named Seiji Maeda CEO of its North American operations and made several management changes.

Maeda is also is a senior director at Denso Corporation.

Prior to this post, Maeda was the head of Denso’s Motor Business Unit in Japan, a role he started in 2018. From 2012-2017, he was director of Corporate Planning, general manager of Electronics Business Planning and general manager of Thermal Systems Business Planning.

Kenichiro Ito, senior executive officer of Denso Corporation and previous CEO of the supplier’s North American operations, has returned to the company’s global headquarters, where he will lead the General Administration and Human Resources Centre as its chief human resources officer.

Ito helmed Denso’s North American operations for nearly five years, playing a key role in its implementation of Denso’s Second Founding, the company’s strategy to enrich mobility and meet the automotive industry’s evolving needs.

Denso has reorganised its North American Engineering Division to strengthen the group’s support of Denso’s manufacturing operations and customers, as well as increase the company’s competitiveness in Research and Development (R&D). The division has been divided into two units:

  • Design and Engineering – Led by Pat Bassett, a senior vice president, the department will support Denso’s business units and manufacturing activities by standardising approaches and resources across the region, helping increase organisational efficiency
  • R&D — Led by Shinichiro Nakamura, a senior vice president, the department will spearhead innovation efforts in connectivity and mobility R&D. In this position, Nakamura will primarily work on mid- and long-term product and technology development, collaborating closely with Denso engineering teams worldwide

Kazuoki Matsugatani, a senior director, has returned to Denso’s global headquarters, to lead Global R&D, as well as the Engineering Development Promotion Division, the Intellectual Property Division, the Design Division, the Product Design Key Technology R&D Division and serve as deputy head of the IT Digital Centre.

Sergio Pujols has been promoted to vice president of the Thermal Management Unit in North America, overseeing engine cooling module and heat pump application design, thermal management R&D, compressor development and engineering planning.

Rick Smith, previously the vice president of the Thermal Management Unit, has moved to an advisory position

Denso Manufacturing Mexico has a new president, Hiromasa Hakamada. Hakamada joined Denso in April, 1991 and has served as director of Production Control.

Mitsuru Kato, the previous president of the location, has returned to the supplier’s global headquarters, where he has been promoted to senior director and joined the CEO Division.

Denso has made these changes in support of Reborn 21, the company initiative to update its operations, provide new value to customers, and reaffirm its focus on quality.

By the end of March, 2021, Denso will use the strategy to recommit to its foundational pillars of green (environmentally friendly) and peace of mind (safer world for all) and transition to a leaner and more robust corporate structure.

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