Toyota Motor Corp said on Thursday that Akio Toyoda will step down as president and chief executive to become chairman from April 1, and hand over the helm of Japan’s biggest automaker to its top branding officer, Koji Sato.
Sato will become the new CEO while the current chairman, Takeshi Uchiyamada, will drop his chairman title but remain on the board, Toyota said.
The issue of who would take over from Toyoda, the 66-year-old grandson of the company’s founder, had increasingly been a focus for investors.
Toyoda, 66, is the grandson of the carmaker’s founder and has served as chief executive since June 2009.
“I thought the best way to further Toyota’s transformation would be for me to become chairman in support of a new president, and this has led to today’s decision. Chairman Uchiyamada has long supported me in all imaginable ways,” Toyoda said in a webcast.
“In retrospect, these 13 years have been a period of struggling to survive one day after the next, and that is my honest feeling,” he added.
Tokyo-listed shares of Toyota ended the session 0.63% lower Thursday ahead of the announcement.
[26/01, 09:46] Julietta: PVC Collection: Imo Govt declares two-day holiday for workers
The Imo Government has declared Thursday (January 26) and Friday (January 27) work-free days to enable workers to collect their Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) for the coming elections.
Briefing newsmen after the weekly Executive Council Meeting in Owerri, the state capital, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Declan Emelumba said the work-free days affect mainly Imo workers in the Civil and Public Service.
He said those involved in essential services like the banks, power and others so designated are not affected by the holidays.
He enjoined indigenes of the state to collect their PVCs and exercise their civic responsibility during the elections.