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New CEO for Honda Oz

Incoming: New Honda Australia managing director and CEO, Satoshi Matsuzawa.

All change at the top of Honda Australia as ex-Asia Oceania executive named new CEO

19 Mar 2010

HONDA has announced the appointment of Satoshi Matsuzawa as the new managing director and CEO of its Australian operations, effective from April 1.

Mr Matsuzawa was previously the general manager of Honda’s Overseas Operation office, with responsibility for car and motorcycle operations for the Asia Oceania region, which includes Australia.

He replaces Honda Australia’s current MD and CEO, Yasuhide Mizuno, who has been appointed president of Dongfeng Honda Automobile Co Ltd (DHA), based in Wuhan Province, China.

 center imageLeft: Honda Australia's current managing director, Yasuhide Mizuno.

A mechanical engineer who started his career with Honda in 1982 in its R&D centre, Mr Matsuzawa moved to Honda’s North Carolina operations in 1996, before transferring back to Honda’s Asaka office in Japan in 2001, when he undertook the role of ‘block manager’ within the product planning department of Honda’s Power Products Division.

Mr Matsuzawa was promoted in 2004 to the position of general manager of Honda’s Product Planning office, before becoming general manager of Business Planning in 2005.

Meantime, while Lindsay Smalley remains Honda Australia senior director, Mr Mizuno will head to China exactly three years after replacing Toshio Iwamoto, who was promoted to Honda ICVS Singapore on April 1, 2007.

Mr Mizuno, who was the president of Honda Malaysia for three years before coming to Australia, will preside over a joint-venture company formed in China between Honda Motor Company and Dongfeng Motor Corporation in 2003.

The Dongfeng Honda plant produces the CR-V, Civic and Accord Euro-based Spirior vehicles, which along with imported models are available through about 250 dealers in China. A separate Honda joint-venture in China, Honda Automobile (China) Company, produces up to 240,000 vehicles annually, primarily for export.

After reaching a record of 60,529 sales in 2007 - and after-tax operating profits of $80 and $82 million in its financial years ending March 31 2007 and 2008 respectively – Honda’s Australian sales slumped to 52,571 in 2008, 41,443 in 2009 and remain 27.8 per cent down so far in 2010.

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