Asahi Glass Company, Limited Business Report FY2009
|(in million JPY)|
|FY2009||FY2008||Rate of change (%)||Factors|
-In 2009, the volume of glass shipments began to recover around the middle of the fiscal year, being boosted by sales incentive measures introduced in many countries. Full-year sales at the Automotive Division, however, decreased year-on-year due to overall slow sales. (Sales of automotive glass accounted for approximately 40 percent of overall glass sales. )
Restructuring-The Company announced that its Kitakyushu Plant in Tobata-ku, Kitakyushu will terminate its automotive glass operations by the end of 2009. After withdrawal, the Company will respond flexibly to changing demand with complementary operations at its two domestic plants in Aichi and Kanagawa as well as production facilities in Asia. Impacted by drastic declines in demand since fall in 2008, the capacity utilization of the automotive glass sector has fallen to about 50 percent. (From an article in the Nikkan Jidosha Shimbun on Apr. 16, 2009)
Contracts-The Company announced that the Company and Daimler AG signed a long-term agreement on April 30, 2009, which will make The Company one of the major glass suppliers of Daimler. Under the multi-year contract, The Company will supply tempered glass for use in side and rear windows of the Mercedes-Benz passenger cars and SUVs to be manufactured in Europe and the U.S. The Company says the new business will increase its share in the global automotive glass market from around 30 percent to 31 percent. (From an article in the Nikkan Jidosha Shimbun on July 1, 2009)
>>>Financial Forecast for the Next Fiscal Year(Sales, Operating Income etc.)
|(in million JPY)|
|R&D expenditures at the Glass Division as a % of overall R&D expenses||21.4||24.3||28.7|
R&D StructureThe focus of development activities is on the following:
1. To accelerate the development of energy-saving, melt-forming technology for producing glass so as to increase environmental friendliness and improve cost efficiency.
2. To develop high value-added products by integrating glass, chemical, and ceramics technologies.
|Central Research Center||-Establishing common, basic technology to develop new technology and products|
|Industrial engineering center||-Conducting research and development in the field of production engineering|
|Engineering centers||-Developing and maintaining production facilities and equipment|
|Research and Development Sections at each division||
-Developing new products related to existing business areas
|Technology Management Group of president's office||-Drawing a technical road map for the Group as a whole
-Coordinating areas of development among all the divisions
R&D ActivitiesGlass business
-The Glass Division is working on developing new products and technology in the area of sheet glass and automotive glass. It is also conducting research to radically improve operations efficiencies of sheet glass production lines, and it is designing various types of glass through computer simulation.
-The Company started developing technology to produce glass for photovoltaic power generation, conductive layer, and low reflecting coating.
-Development focus is also set on technology to reduce carbon dioxide gas emissions in the glass production process and to engineer innovative technique to produce glass.
-The Company plans to improve efficiency of the curving process for automotive glass. In order to reduce heat energy required for curving glass to two or three dimensions, it will spread to its overseas operations its latest method to minimize the area to be heated and the temperature level. It will further develop successful cases at factories which have introduced the method and apply the new method to form shapes which have been difficult to be processed. It will also work to increase glass shapes with large curvatures that are processable without molds. (From an article in the Nikkan Jidosha Shimbun on July 7, 2009)
|(in million JPY)|
|Capital investment at the Glass Division as a % of overall capital expenditures||36.7%||40.9%||42.5%|