Yazaki

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For a Japanese judoka, see Yuta Yazaki.

Yazaki (矢崎総業 Yazaki Sōgyō?) is a global automotive parts supplier with a focus on wire harnesses and to a lesser degree instruments and components such as connectors and terminals. The company's origin and headquarters are in Japan, but in 2011, roughly 90% of its employees are outside the home country.

Yazaki ranks among the largest worldwide automotive suppliers, ranked 16th by the industry journal Automotive News in 2010.[1] In 2011, the Yazaki Group employs over 192,000 people globally (Japan: 21,000, Europe: 29,000, Americas: 52,000, Asia & Oceania: 90,000).[2] The total sales in 2009 was over 11,000 Mio US$ of which more than 9,300 Mio US$ are automotive sales.

The company's product lineup includes electrical cables, meter and auto instruments, gas equipment, air-conditioning, and solar-powered systems. As a first tier supplier, Yazaki sells chiefly to auto makers, and, to a lesser extent, electric power, gas, and general construction companies. Yazaki is among the top 100 companies receiving the most US patents. [3]

Yazaki North America Headquarters

The Yazaki Group is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, with European headquarters in Cologne, Germany and the North American headquarters in Canton, Michigan.

History and expansion[edit]

Starting as a small Japanese family business selling wiring harnesses for automobiles in 1929, Yazaki Group in 2011 employs more than 192,000 people worldwide, with ca. 90% of them (171.000) outside of Japan.<[4] After World War II, Yazaki focused on automotive wire harness production and grew rapidly. Overseas growth increased strongly between 1974 and the 1990s. There were external and internal reasons for this increase. The main external reason was the general trend of Japanese automotive companies to move production abroad to avoid trade sanctions in this period.[5] This strategy change was accompanied by a change of leadership within Yazaki, when the young heir Yasuhiko Yazaki succeeded the founder Sadami Yazaki in 1974, aged only 33. Between 1974 and 1990, overseas sales grew roughly 30 times (from ca. ¥4 Billion in 1974 to ¥116 Billion), while overseas employees increased tenfold ( from 2,922 to 33,703).[6]

Main business areas[edit]

Yazaki's business is concentrated in the automotive industry and focuses on three areas: Electrical Distribution Systems (e.g. wire harnesses), Electronics & Instrumentation, and Components. As a first tier supplier, Yazaki interacts directly with car makers such as Toyota, Honda, GM, Ford, Fiat Chrysler, Tesla, Subaru, Nissan, Mazda, Jaguar Land Rover, PSA, etc. and coordinates parts of development, sub-component sourcing, testing and assembly.

Electrical Distribution Systems: Wire harness production is a labor-intensive process and requires high degrees of coordination of and closeness to the car manufacturer. Yazaki is among the global leaders in this area with a business share of close to 30%.[7][8][9]

Electronics & Instrumentation: In the highly mobile and innovative business of automotive electronics and instruments, Yazaki provides Instrument Clusters, Display and Clock Modules, Power Distribution Boxes, as well as Body Electronics, Head Up Displays (HUD) and Combi Switches. The company also offers HMI solutions, and system support for Intelligent Electronic, Power & Signal Distribution.[10]

Components: Yazaki develops and produces specialized automotive connectors and terminals.[11]

Criticism[edit]

Many Yazaki instrument clusters have their circuitry on a flexible polymer film, as opposed to a traditional rigid printed circuit board in order to produce the instrument clusters at extremely low cost. Electronic components, wires, and jumpers are soldered to the film, which is adhered to the housing of the instrument cluster. Over time, the adhesive weakens, permitting movement of the flexible film. Vibrations normally encountered with the operation of an automobile will eventually break circuit traces on the flexible film, especially where rigid components such as jumper wires are soldered to the film. This causes various failures of the instrument cluster, for example loss of nighttime illumination, failure of cruise control, or failure of warning indicators or individual gauges in the instrument cluster.

Yazaki digital odometers are notoriously easy to tamper with. In conjunction with software available on the Internet and a simple serial interface, most Yazaki odometers can be reprogrammed and reset to an arbitrary value. The lack of safeguards and tamper-proofing mean that odometer tampering cannot be detected even by the vehicle manufacturer in cases where maintenance records or other documented history for the vehicle in question are not available.

Price fixing[edit]

On January 30, 2012, the US Justice Department announced after two years of investigation that it had discovered part of a massive price fixing scheme in which Denso and Yazaki played a significant role. The conspiracy, which fixed prices and allocated components to such car manufacturers as Toyota and Honda, extended from Michigan to Japan, where it was also under investigation. Denso agreed to pay a fine of 78 million dollars.[12] Yazaki agreed to pay a fine of $470 million, and four Yazaki executives were sentenced to prison and assessed a $20,000 fine each.[13]

Tsuneaki Hanamura was released from prison on 19 February 2014. His prison number is 47006-039.[14]

Ryoji Kawai was released from prison on 19 February 2014. His prison number is 47002-039.[15]

Shigeru Ogawa was released from prison on 9 July 2013. His prison number is 47007-039.[16]

Hisamitsu Takada was released from prison on 9 July 2013. His prison number is 47000-039.[17]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.cieautomotive.com/uploaded_files/noticias/docs/S2947zr_news_100_tops.pdf
  2. ^ Company report 2011: http://www.yazaki-group.com/global/pdf/ser2011_02-06.pdf
  3. ^ Hoovers company profiles: http://www.hoovers.com/company/Yazaki_Corporation/hxkfti-1-1njht4-1njfaq.html, retrieved 2012-4-5
  4. ^ http://www.yazaki-group.com/global/pdf/ser2011_02-06.pdf
  5. ^ Womack, J. P., D. T. Jones, & D. Roos. 1991 [1990]. The Machine That Changed the World. New York: Harper Perennial.
  6. ^ Kazuo Ichijo (2007): The Yazaki Corporation. Article written for the IMD – Lombard Odier Darier Hentsch Distinguished Family Business Award 2007. http://www.yazaki-europe.com/fileadmin/templates/pdf_automotive/Yazaki_Corporation.pdf
  7. ^ Kazuo Ichijo (2007): The Yazaki Corporation. Article written for the IMD – Lombard Odier Darier Hentsch Distinguished Family Business Award 2007. http://www.yazaki-europe.com/fileadmin/templates/pdf_automotive/Yazaki_Corporation.pdf
  8. ^ http://www.hoovers.com/company/Yazaki_Corporation/hxkfti-1.html
  9. ^ Yazaki Europe Product Overview Homepage, accessed 2012-4-5: http://www.yazaki-europe.com/index.php?id=48
  10. ^ Yazaki Europe Product Overview Homepage, accessed 2012-4-5: http://www.yazaki-europe.com/index.php?id=48
  11. ^ Yazaki Europe Product Overview Homepage, accessed 2012-4-5: http://www.yazaki-europe.com/index.php?id=48
  12. ^ Associated Press, "U.S. fines Japanese auto parts suppliers $470 million", Japan Times, 1 February 2012, p. 1.
  13. ^ USA Today, "Two auto parts suppliers fined $548M for price fixing", USA Today, 30 January 2012:http://content.usatoday.com/communities/driveon/post/2012/01/two-auto-parts-suppliers-fined-500m-for-price-fixing/1
  14. ^ Bureau of prisons, Inmate locator, retrieved 2014 December 7: http://www.bop.gov/inmateloc/
  15. ^ Bureau of prisons, Inmate locator, retrieved 2014 December 7: http://www.bop.gov/inmateloc/
  16. ^ Bureau of prisons, Inmate locator, retrieved 2014 December 7: http://www.bop.gov/inmateloc/
  17. ^ Bureau of prisons, Inmate locator, retrieved 2014 December 7: http://www.bop.gov/inmateloc/

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