Yokohama Tire Corp. (YTC) has appointed Hikomitsu Noji CEO, effective May 1. The announcement is part of several corporate management changes the tire maker is making.

Noji will assume overall leadership of YTC in addition to his duties as president and representative director of The Yokohama Rubber Co., Ltd. (YRC), YTC’s parent company in Japan. He is expected to travel to the U.S. regularly in his new role but will remain based at YRC’s headquarters in Tokyo, the company added.

YTC also announced that Takayuki Hamaya will be in charge of day-to-day operations including strategy development, corporate planning and driving YTC’s business performance. Hamaya will retain his title of chief operating officer.     

Yasushi Tanaka, who has been YTC’s president and CEO since June 2011, will return to YRC as assistant to the president of Tire Business Group. In his new capacity, Tanaka will oversee YRC’s global plans on new plant constructions as well as expansions on existing plants.

“Yokohama is fully committed to investing resources in the North American marketplace,” said Tadanobu Nagumo, YRC chairman and CEO, “and we are confident that this vital market will be served most effectively with the key management structure we have put in place.” 

Other changes include:

  • Fred Koplin, from director, marketing communications to senior director, consumer sales.
  • Rick Phillips, from director, commercial sales to senior director, commercial and OTR sales.
  • Andrew Briggs, from director, product planning and motorsports to director, marketing communications and product planning.
  • Lawrence Kull, from national sales manager, consumer division to director, tire business planning. He will continue as the national account manager for Discount Tire.