As it looks to finally catch up with the competing Japanese automakers, Honda has announced that the first foreign and first female executive will join its group of all-male board members and executive officers.
Issao Mizoguchi, a Brazilian of Japanese origin, has been named by the Asian country’s third biggest automaker as one of its 23 operating officers, holding the position of senior vice president at Honda South America.
Next up, Hideko Kunii, a professor at Shibaura Institute of Technology, will become the first female named to Honda’s 13-member board of directors – in one of the company’s two positions with no executive post.
It looks like Honda is listening to the call issued last year by Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who asked all listed companies to have at least one woman among senior executives, while also aiming to improve the 0.7% managers and 7% of all employees woman percentage it holds.
Having traditionally chosen male members to the company’s supervisory board, Honda, among other big Japanese companies, has been under pressure recently to open up to outsiders and women the top management roster to up their global perspective and have a better risk management.