A Paper on “CEO Business Meetings with Thailand’s Key Auto Parts Manufacturers”
At SME Support, JAPAN, we have been expanding our network with overseas government organizations, with a focus on ASEAN countries, since 2014 to support SMEs in Japan develop overseas. Our goal is to develop network between SMEs in Japan and companies that make things in Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam and Myanmar among many more through implementing programs such as business meeting and networking events, company visits, etc.
As part of supporting programs for overseas development effort, SME Support, JAPAN sponsored and hosted “CEO Business Meetings for Thailand’s Key Auto Parts Manufacturers” in Nagoya, Osaka and Tokyo, from May 25th to 29th, 2015.
From the automotive hub of Asia, Thailand’s 5 leading manufacturers of auto-parts arrived in Japan to find collaborative partners for outsourcing, conducting joint researches, and establishing joint ventures. There were 125 meetings overall with 72 Japanese companies.
Voices from the participants
DAISIN CO., LTD.
President & COO - Mr. Thanin Leegomonchai
My company provides manufacturing and processing of aluminum die cast. I participated in this event because we wanted to find Japanese companies that possess excellent aluminum die casting technology for auto parts, and to engage in technology sharing and joint R&D.
In this event, we met a Japanese company with high pressure die cast technology that our company do not own, and they considered the possibilities of joint venture and technical collaboration in a very speedy manner.
I want to make progress in establishing technical collaboration so I want to visit their factory before September. The company is considering doing business in Thailand on a long term basis, so I am hoping for a mutually beneficial collaboration.
We spoke with 30 companies in 5 days but due to the prior screening to select companies with the technologies we are looking for and the fact that each meeting was given an ample length, we spent a very productive time.
CAST Co., Ltd.
Managing Director - Mr. Makoto Wakabayashi
We are manufacturer of cast products and this year marks the 126th year in business. Among casting products, we manufacture larger industrial objects such as industrial robots, welding machines and small construction machines by handholding method. Our strength lay in having standardized and automated handholding process which is conventionally not suited for mass production. With our technology, we increased production ratio, volume, and we are able to provide our service consistently.
Japan’s casting market has been on a declining trend due to strong yen, but with the reversed currency trend, we are eyeing exporting opportunities, so I feel that now is the time to assail. Since about 3 years ago, we have been keeping a close eye on the global cast market and have been pro-actively participating in overseas trade shows, but on many occasions I felt difficulties in conducting business meetings with overseas companies or buyers whom I met for the first time. However, this business meeting event was hosted by SME Support, JAPAN so we were mutually well informed about our businesses so I felt a sense of security in having business meetings.
It was a great opportunity to seek possibilities in technical cooperation, exporting and joint ventures in anticipation of global business development for the future.
NAGATSU PRECISION MOLD CO., LTD.
COO - Mr. Kiyoshi Yamanoi
We are manufacturers of plastic molds and mainly manufacture camera related optical parts.
With the recent shift in production sites from China to ASEAN countries as a backdrop, we have decided to join this business meeting event.
The Thai companies I met in the event were engaged in a wide range of businesses and learned that they are looking for even higher technology, so by building a sustained relationship I feel that it would eventually lead to a specific collaborative project.
The biggest benefit of this business meeting event was the fact that I was able to meet with members from leading Thai companies, which is rare despite the fact that we are in the same industry. Even with companies that we mutually do not expect to find common interest, we found unexpected connections by engaging in direct conversations. It was an event where I felt various possibilities.
HIKARI LIGHT METALS CO., LTD.
President - Hiroyuki Kokami
We are a manufacturing company that specializes in aluminum alloy casting. I joined the business meeting program because I felt this event was a great opportunity to hear the needs from Thai companies.
We have been proactively engaged in technology sharing in the past with overseas manufacturers but with little success in terms of partnership, but in this program I feel confident that something positive will come out of it. I had industry specific questions asked by companies in the same field making similar products while confronting similar issues, such as “how are you manufacturing this?” or “what kind of malfunction do you often get?” We were able to proceed with our conversation with mutual interest in each other’s technology and business, and for starters we agreed that I would make a company visit soon. I have high hopes for future developments.
TOYOTA MOTOR ASIA PACIFIC ENGINEERING & MANUFACTURING CO., LTD.
Vice President, Purchasing Division-Mr. Hideaki Hosoe
This year marks the 53rd year since our company began manufacturing automobiles in Thailand. Since the beginning, we have progressed with Thai’s local businesses.
During this period, Thailand’s automobile industry has advanced greatly, and the automobile and auto-parts industry has grown to be one of the most important export goods for the country. However, as we forecast the global market to intensify in the upcoming years, we feel that Thailand needs to solidify its foundation as the production base for not only Thailand’s needs but for countries around the world, so it needs to further develop higher technology and strengthen its production power.
Japanese automobile industry has developed great technologies with its long history. This business meeting program opened doors for possibilities between Japanese companies with excellent technology and with plans to expand businesses in Asia and Thailand’s key auto- parts manufacturers who want to enhance technology and production power.
Through the five days of business meeting event, I feel that the discussions presented merits to both parties as Japanese companies were able to make progress in gaining foothold in the Asian market expansion and collaboration, and as for Thailand companies, they were able to seek possibilities in strengthening their technologies through potential collaborations.
I feel that this event provided substance and real results.
Despite operating in the same automobile industry, networking among Thai and Japanese companies were conventionally limited to one on one type of progress but because SME Support, JAPAN held this business meeting event, we were able to produce specific, as well as substantial output within the given time slot. I would like to express my thanks to SME Support, JAPAN for providing a platform that served as a bridge between Thai and Japanese automobile industries.
SME Support, JAPAN
Project Manager – Isamu Minami
Passion and Energy—Seeing Thailand and Japanese companies express their ambitions, as two technical experts, especially stood out in this business meeting.
The participating Thai companies had gathered and thoroughly examined information on the Japanese companies prior to the event and the appropriate persons in charge participated in the event. As a result, agreements on company visits with technology collaboration and joint venture in mind were made, as well as agreements to exchange further opinions at manufacturing sites in Thailand regarding product quality improvement and innovation in production process as a goal.
In this particular business meeting event, the length of each meeting was extended from prior meeting events to allow both parties to thoroughly hear the issues at hand and to provide necessary information. Also, in addition to conventional public recruitment, we also encouraged Japanese companies with outstanding technology and products and who are listed on SME Support, JAPAN’s own online business matching site, “J-GoodTech”. Also, Thailand companies nominated specific companies listed on “J-GoodTech” as a preferred meeting partner.
I would like to express my thanks to Toyota Motor Asia Pacific Engineering & Manufacturing for acting as a mediator for information on Thai businesses.
Outline: CEO Business Meetings with Thailand’s Key Auto Parts Manufacturers
When: May, 25th, 2015 (Mon) ~ 29th (Fri)
Venues: Nagoya, Osaka, Tokyo
Sponsors: SME Support, JAPAN / TOYOTA MOTOR ASIA PACIFIC ENGINEERING & MANUFACTURING CO., LTD.
We at SME Support, JAPAN will continue to strive in providing effective business meeting events between overseas companies and SMEs in Japan. For those who could not participate in this event, please consider joining us next time. We look forward in working with you in the future.
SME Support, JAPAN (Organization for Small & Medium Enterprises and Regional Innovation, JAPAN)
Marketing Support Department, Marketing Support Division
3-5-1 Toranomon 37 Mori Bldg., Minato-ku, Tokyo, JAPAN
Postal Code #105-8453
Tel. 03-5470-2375 Fax.03-5470-2376