Skip to Main Contents

Initiative to Strengthen All Aspects of Design. Design Director appointed to oversee strengthening of design functions

March 30, 2012

Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. announces the appointment of Mr. Yasuhiro Kira as Design Director of the company's recently launched Design Center, where he will serve directly under the Center's Executive General Manager as of April 1, 2012. Mr. Kira has served as head of Yamaha Corporation's Product Design Laboratory and as a professor at Shinshu University and brings to the position a wealth of experience in the fields of design organization management and initiatives for promoting design internationally.

Drawing on his experience as an instructor of young designers in institutions of higher learning, Mr. Kira will be responsible for design-related management in areas ranging from setting long-term design strategy and building design-related organizational structure to personnel development and more.

Yamaha Motor established the new Design Center in January 2012 to strengthen all aspects of design functions companywide. The Design Center is comprised of the 3D Design Division and the Coloring Design Division responsible primarily for product design, and the Design Promotion Division responsible chiefly for corporate design. The Design Director will serve directly under the Design Center Executive General Manager and will work with all three of these divisions to advance design management functions. The objective is to coordinate the creation of concepts that will be shared globally throughout the Yamaha Motor group, not only in the area of product design but also extending to the Yamaha Motor brand itself and all things related to design.

Yamaha Motor is currently working to increase its corporate value through sustainable growth by expanding "business scale" while improving "financial strength" and augmenting "corporate strength" as outlined in the next medium-term management plan. This initiative falls in the realm of efforts to augment "corporate strength" and will surely contribute significantly to the company's ongoing efforts to strengthen design with a comprehensive approach.

Profile of Yasuhiro Kira
  1970 : Graduated from the Department of Design, Faculty of Engineering, Chiba University
Joined Nippon Gakki Co., Ltd. (present Yamaha Corporation)
1996 : Appointed General Manager of Product Design Laboratory
2004 : Appointed Executive Officer, General Manager of Product Design Laboratory
2008 : Retired from Yamaha Corporation
2008 : Appointed professor of Kansei Engineering at Shinshu University
2012 : Concluded professorship at Shinshu University in March
Selected Career Achievements
  · As head of the Yamaha Corp. Product Design Laboratory, he was instrumental in establishing the company's design philosophy and pursuing a global design organization that began actively promoting design abroad before other Japanese corporations.
· As a product designer, he produced product designs (the "SILENT ViolinTM," etc.) that proposed new value and new concepts that have achieved high levels of value for society.
· As a judge for the Good Design Awards and others, he has a network of connections in the global design world.
Back to