Business Speaker Series 49
Fumiaki Hayata, Subaru Corporation
April 20, 2022
The NAJAS/KKC Business Speaker Series titled “Front Roads: The Way Forward for Japan and the U.S. in 2022” was held in cooperation with the Japan-America Society of Indiana.
Mr. Fumiaki Hayata, Executive Vice President of Subaru Corporation and Chairman of Subaru of Indiana Automotive, Inc. was invited as a keynote speaker. The Honorable Hiroshi Tajima, Consul-General of Japan in Chicago and Mr. Brett Smith, Director of the Center for Automotive Research also attended the event as speakers.
In his presentation “Subaru – Global Drive and Innovation”, Mr. Hayata gave an overview of Subaru’s growth and success in the U.S. market and discussed current challenges, global strategy, and new vehicle development. Mr. Hayata stated that there are many challenges for all automakers, including microchips, raw material costs, workforce, and transportation, which are signs of major structural change. Subaru sees this wave of change as a great opportunity, because the new technologies of the future are compatible with Subaru’s most important characteristics such as safety, longevity, and adventure, and therefore the technologies can further enhance the value of Subaru vehicles.
Mr. Brett’s comments focused on the reality of the need for infrastructure and the time involved for a full transition to electric vehicles. Consul-General Tajima stated that what is most impressive about Indiana is the highly collaborative effort that works on all levels: mayors, counties, economic development groups, and statewide officials are all working closely together.