Gate 1 Continuous Value Creation
Mitsui’s Corporate Culture
What supports the Mitsui Group’s “Challenge & Innovation”?
Here, we take a look at the corporate culture of the Company through the eyes
of its employees in Japan and overseas as well as the senior executives of its affiliated companies and partner companies.
Leading by example, to accomplish our mission
I am the CEO of a Thailand-based sugar manufacturing company jointly managed by Mitsui and Mitsui Sugar Co., Ltd. We are in the process of building a new production line with a view to shifting toward high-value-added products with dramatically better quality and providing the world with a stable supply of sugar, a daily necessity. As many of the personnel at our operating sites do not understand English, we are concentrating unstinting efforts on talent development and organizational reform. My predecessors created the business from almost nothing, working in a new frontier, not speaking the local dialect. An absolute determination to accomplish the mission and to continue growing by thinking and acting independently are in Mitsui’s DNA. I want to share with employees our mission of providing people around the world every day with our sugar made with dedication from sugarcane carefully grown by our local farmers. Through patient dialogue with local personnel and other employees, I aim to increase the numbers of those who embrace this mission. By combining this approach with an emphasis on strict discipline, we will continue to evolve and improve the company.
Hideyuki Murakami CEO, Kaset Phol Sugar Ltd.
Acceptance of diverse individuals that fosters mutual respect
I am responsible for in-house training in relation to Microsoft 365 products and services and other measures focused on the use of leading-edge IT to improve business efficiency and promote work style reform in the Company and its affiliated companies. The challenging goal that I am pursuing is to draw on the expertise and networks that we have developed to create user-friendly environments that truly heighten employee productivity. In these efforts, we are seeking systems and services that incorporate themselves into work processes organically because employees can use the systems and services intuitively, conveniently, and comfortably anywhere and at anytime.
I was recruited mid-career by Mitsui from a global IT company in 2015. After joining the Company, senior coworkers taught me the importance of pursuing projects based on one’s own policies and passion. Mitsui has an open-minded corporate culture. As a result, employees welcomed to offer opinions on matters not directly related to their work. This atmosphere of acceptance and understanding enables employees to go beyond their particular role or organization and forge ahead with matters that they feel strongly about. I believe that employees with clear ideas of their own who can adapt flexibly to social changes and create new types of work have always been the source of Mitsui’s competitiveness.
User Experience Transformation Department,
Integrated Digital Strategy Division
Empathize with long-term vision and professionalism
For more than 35 years, I was engaged in the operations and management of the copper business of Corporación Nacional del Cobre de Chile (CODELCO), the world’s largest copper mining company. After retiring from CODELCO, I joined MMRDLA because I wanted to get involved with projects from a standpoint other than that of an operator and to take on the challenge of creating and growing the value of businesses. I identify and sympathize with Mitsui’s commitment to maximize project value with the spirit of transformation while tackling medium- to long-term strategic perspectives, which are essential in the mineral resources business. Also, Mitsui’s emphasis on developing human resources and innovating technology with a view to future growth is extremely attractive. When working with Mitsui personnel, I am always impressed by their professionalism. Invariably, they show respect for others and are open-minded. In particular, Mitsui personnel are adept at working in a disciplined and dedicated manner as a team.
I believe that Mitsui is well placed to contribute to the development of the copper business throughout Latin America as a corporate group that could leverage comprehensive strengths to realize integrated collective functions not only in Chile but globally. Taking maximum advantage of Mitsui’s accumulated knowledge and experience in relation to the copper business, I will concentrate efforts on heightening the trust in and presence of Mitsui in Chile’s mining industry as well as overall businesses in Chile.
Mitsui & Co. Mineral Resources Development (Latin America) Limitada
Continue to pursue challenge and innovation with conviction
After joining Mitsui & Co. (Asia Pacific) Pte. Ltd., which is headquartered in Singapore, I was involved in the acquisition of PT. Kingsford Holdings as a project member, and I was seconded to the company in 2017. Since then, I have mainly been responsible for the post-acquisition integration process.
We need to pay more attention than ever to risks as a variety of issues have emerged due to the spread of COVID-19. Nonetheless, we will unwaveringly pursue opportunities to grow the new business. The operating company at which I am currently seconded has grown to become the leader in Indonesia’s pharmaceutical packaging industry. Looking ahead, we want to make the company No. 1 in Southeast Asia and then No. 1 in Asia. In this way, we will become a significant arm of Mitsui’s Non-Resource Area. In executing a prepared strategy, nothing is more important than gaining the buy-in from frontline employees. For this reason, providing persuasive explanations that get the acceptance from our frontline employees is one of my major tasks and sources of motivation.
Attitude to continuously pursue Challenge and Innovation is part of Mitsui’s DNA. When you take on new initiatives, you face a range of issues. However, I have learned that professionals stick to their guns and, while taking occasional criticism on board, are uncompromising in the pursuit of their ultimate objectives. Mitsui has a corporate culture that allows all employees to tackle ambitious goals together while improving themselves in friendly competition.
Director, PT. Kingsford Holdings
A true partner who will enable our continued growth
In 2009, I became CEO of Ventura Foods LLC, which is a joint venture of Mitsui and CHS, Inc., the largest agricultural cooperative in the United States. I am proud of the relationship of trust and friendship that we have built with Mitsui for more than 10 years. This relationship encompasses not only Mitsui employees assigned to Ventura Foods but also many members of the senior management team, including President Tatsuo Yasunaga. Furthermore, Mitsui and Ventura Foods share a belief that our people are key to our future success. We are equally committed to investing in our talent and supporting their development. In fact, this philosophy has been one of the key reasons for the growth of Ventura Foods.
Mitsui plays an important role in the growth strategy of Ventura Foods. We leverage Mitsui’s in-depth, wide-ranging knowledge and global experience to inform our International strategy. Ventura Foods has focused on expanding its overseas business in step with the overseas forays of our customers. Thanks to Mitsui’s expertise and network, in a short space of time we have been able to significantly expand our overseas business outside North America. Mitsui is a collaborative partner as well, always sharing best practices in relation to a wide variety of areas including IT, finance, human resources, and legal. Going forward, Ventura Foods is sure to grow further as it tackles digital transformation in partnership with Mitsui. As part of this initiative and others, Mitsui and its employees are rigorously exploring how they can contribute to the growth of Ventura Foods.
Ventura Foods LLC
Working sincerely to meet nation-building expectations
I am engaged in strategic planning for Mitsui’s oil and gas resource development and in managing projects that have become operational in the United States, the Middle East, and other regions. The differentiating features of our operations are our long history in the energy development business, which began in the 1960s, and also the large number of technicians with in-depth knowledge that work at our affiliated companies. When Mitsui becomes involved in a project, the host country always has expectations with respect to the roles that the Company can play in helping to build the nation. Such situations particularly call for Mitsui to exercise its comprehensive strengths.
On the other hand, I will never forget that the cooperation of our host countries Qatar and Abu Dhabi enabled us to maintain stable supplies to important customers when supplies were struggling to keep up with demand at the time of the Great East Japan Earthquake.
While the scale of energy development is large, I have learned that building consensus by responding to each matter with sincerity in the process of negotiations is the most important thing. Changing in step with society is in Mitsui’s DNA. As climate change countermeasures become an increasingly pressing issue, we will continuously consider value which we can provide and cater to society’s needs accordingly.
Group Corporate Strategy Department,
Oil and Gas Resources Development Division
A corporate culture that fosters reforms
With a view to enhancing the value of Mitsui as a consolidated corporate group, we help business units and affiliated companies improve their business management. A feature of our department’s work is that even after a project has ended, we ensure that the proposed strategies are progressing steadily by working with the employees of target companies over the long term to tackle management issues in a hands-on manner. These efforts extend from building strategy frameworks through to rules and regulations.
Our superiors constantly stress that, regardless of our age or experience, it is important to have our own clear opinions and move forward without being constrained by convention. I believe that true professionals are those that take on challenges without fear of change, continue efforts untiringly, and achieve solid results in the end.
Further, the composition of the department is distinctive, with 10 of its 15 members having worked at other companies. This diversity demonstrates that as an organization Mitsui is not content with maintaining the status quo; it is always seeking reforms. Instilled in all employees, this reform-focused culture plays a major role in maintaining and enhancing Mitsui’s competitiveness.
Business Consulting Department,
Corporate Development Division
A Partner’s View of Mitsui
Taking on the challenge of further growth and innovation with Mitsui
Our robust relationship with Mitsui has been growing for nearly 20 years. More than ever, I appreciate the importance of the strong partnership between the two companies and our shared long-term vision. Mitsui is one of our most important strategic partners.
For us, Mitsui’s global footprint and involvement across various industries provided new ideas and unique opportunities to new customers and new relationships around the globe. Penske Automotive Group, Inc. had already been entering markets outside North America. However, we were able to strengthen our position in Australia thanks to the collaboration with Mitsui, which has a long history of experience across various sectors and customers there. Additionally, Mitsui has opened new opportunities for Penske Logistics to expand and enhance its logistics businesses and supply chain solutions through the acquisition of a company that provides logistics services primarily to automotive manufacturers.
As the business landscape is changing rapidly, Mitsui’s strategic vision, diversification, commitment to mobility, and its focus on sustainability promise to be a significant source of support for our innovation efforts. Moreover, we are convinced that our existing business relationship will help Mitsui to deliver on its corporate slogan of “360°business innovation” to create and grow business while addressing many of the material issues facing the world today.
Roger S. Penske