Skip Navigation LinksMy Argus / News / News Story

Printer friendly

Kobe Steel executive to step down amid scandal

09 Mar 2018 20:18 GMT
Kobe Steel executive to step down amid scandal

Houston, 9 March (Argus) — Japan-based Kobe Steel appointed a new chief executive in the wake of a data fraud scandal.

Mitsugu Yamaguchi will assume his new role as chief executive, president and representative director on 1 April. Until then, Yamaguchi will continue as executive vice president and representative director.

Yamaguchi takes over for Hiroya Kawasaki following a scandal uncovered in October 2017 in which the company admitted to falsifying data to supply steel powder used in auto parts manufacturing. The company faces a lawsuit in the US.

"Under a new structure in the coming future, Kobe Steel intends to fulfill its responsibilities with regard to the series of misconduct, along with restoring the trust of everyone as quickly as possible," the company said.

A lawsuit against Kobe Steel, Kobe Aluminum, Shinsho, Toyota Motor and their respective US affiliates was filed on 5 March in a San Francisco court.

The plaintiffs are alleging breach of warranty and consumer fraud for purchases of Toyota vehicles that contain parts using Kobe Steel and Kobe Aluminum products.

Kobe Steel could not be reached for comment. Toyota said it is assessing the situation and considering measures going forward.

"Toyota's priority is the safety of our customers and we are working to further confirm details, including identifying which vehicle models might be subject to the situation and what components were used as well as effects there might be on individual vehicles," a Toyota spokesperson said.