In his final new year’s address as president and CEO of Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (K Line) Eizo Murakami has announced a corporate restructuring to promote digitalisation throughout the company, Japan’s third largest shipowner.
Murakami, who will move to the post of chairman in April, told employees today: “[I]t is our policy to advance a reform towards a business which creates a new kind of value, unique to us, which anticipates changes in our clientele, by means such as the construction of a business model adapted to changes in society, and adapting to digital technologies such as artificial intelligence and the internet of things.”
In order to handle these changes, this month a new organisation will be set up within the giant shipping company. For digital technology activities a new AI-digitalization advancement section is being created, while for lateral group strategies and dealing with customers, a new marketing strategy section is being created.
“Working in coordination these sections will cooperate with departments both inside and outside the group and the company, forming a structure which provides new added value to our customers,” Murakami said.
This April K Line will celebrate its 100th anniversary.
Murakami also used his New Year address to decry growing protectionism across the world.
“[T]he trend towards protectionism, which has arisen in recent years, has grown even stronger, in particular the development of America First policies by the United States has had a major destabilising effect around the world,” Murakami said, adding: “Such actions have greatly upset the global economy, and there is great concern regarding the effect they will have on trade, which is the very foundation of our business.”