Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. will acquire the design business of its subsidiary ELM Design Co., Ltd. (hereafter "ELM") as of July 1, 2012 in a move towards further strengthening its overall design capabilities. ELM has been responsible for the exterior design of some of Yamaha Motor's products, primarily scooter models.
With the new Design Center that was established in January 2012 as the centerpiece, Yamaha Motor is initiating measures towards strengthening overall design company-wide in a comprehensive way that includes strategy formulation, personnel development and product competitiveness.
The appointment of a Design Director was another step to build a system for promoting design strategy, personnel development and more. The internalization of the design business of ELM will not only contribute to strengthening product competitiveness through design but also make it possible to bring the power of design to a wide range of areas other than products.
ELM has won high acclaim for its designs in products such as the "Majesty" big scooter series, which has enjoyed a popular following since its release in 1995, and the "EC-03" electric commuter vehicle. The designs of products like these have won high recognition, such as receiving the coveted Good Design Award (as well as Good Design Special Awards). Overseas as well, ELM is behind the design of the "Mio" series, a Yamaha commuter model prominent in the ASEAN region, and more recently it was involved in the design of the TMAX (2012 European market spec) sporty commuter model, which won the internationally renowned "red dot design award" in the "product design 2012" category.
With the incorporation of ELM into Yamaha Motor, all of its employees will become employees of Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. and ownership of ELM's facility assets will be transferred as well.
Yamaha Motor is currently working to increase its corporate value through sustainable growth by expanding "business scale," 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 further strengthen its overall design functions.