“Germany is traditionally one of Japan’s most important foreign trade partners and the foreign trade volume continues to increase. ‘Made in Germany’ still enjoys a very strong reputation in Japan,” says Kai Ristau, Head of International Sales and Business Development at Beckhoff Automation, Verl, describing the market situation.
In Toshimitsu Kawano, an experienced automation expert has been appointed Managing Director of the Japanese Beckhoff subsidiary. The Japanese company’s head office is situated in the Bay of Yokohama, in Minato-Mirai. The Japanese Beckhoff team presently consists of five employees. Cooperation with the Japanese distributor K.MECS will continue on the basis of partnerships with specific accounts and projects.
“The Japanese market is dominated by the large Japanese hardware controller manufacturers. Our opportunity lies in convincing the rather traditional Japanese market of our high-performance control philosophy based on PC and IT standards. One door opener here is EtherCAT technology, which Beckhoff developed. The Ethernet-based fieldbus has been well-accepted in Japan. The EtherCAT Technology Group (ETG) already has over 160 members in Japan,” Kai Ristau reports.
Preparations for opening the new Beckhoff branch office came to a standstill due to the earthquake and tsunami disaster in March 2011. “Despite the continuing normalization of everyday life, the focus is on reconstruction,” says Toshimitsu Kawano. “We are supporting the industrial companies affected in the recovery as quickly as possible and getting their production up and running again. In parallel to that we are pushing sales in the fields of machine building, plant manufacturing and building automation.”
Beckhoff Automation K.K.
Nisseki Yokohama Building
1-1-8 Sakuragicho, Naka-ku
Phone: +81 (45) 650 1612
Fax: +81 (45) 650 1613
Toshimitsu Kawano, Managing Director of Beckhoff Japan