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Panasonic Appoints Company Veteran Yuki Kusumi As CEO: Report

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  • Tsuga will become chairman
  • The change comes as Panasonic has begun to benefit from a partnership with Tesla, which was central to the incumbent chief’s strategy

As per a report by Reuters, Japan’s Panasonic Corp has appointed its head of automotive business Yuki Kusumi as the company’s next chief executive officer, replacing Kazuhiro Tsuga, who was the architect of a partnership with Tesla Inc. He will take the reins on April 1, , after a three-decade career at the company. It has seen Kusumi lead the automotive component business and the TV operations, much like his predecessor. Tsuga will become chairman added the report.

Partnership with Tesla

As per the report, the change comes as Panasonic has begun to benefit from a partnership with Tesla, which was central to the incumbent chief’s strategy. It added that strong sales of Tesla electric vehicles (EV) have allowed Panasonic’s battery business to bring out profits this year.

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It added that Kusumi also oversaw the launch of a joint battery venture with Toyota Motor Corp in April. It added that under Tsuga’s eight-year leadership, Panasonic has shifted its focus away from low-margin consumer electronics to batteries, factory machines and components. Panasonic’s partnership with Tesla includes a $1.6 billion bet on a battery joint venture in Nevada, which was signed in 2014.

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