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Toyota falling behind rivals in race to go electric

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Taking up herewith Japanese Business Trend News by Media.
Business Trend in Japan will be read via these News.
Aug 22 Record-breaking Bolt shoes put on sale in Japan (AP)
 Running shoes identical to those worn by record-breaking Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt were put on sale at Puma's retail store in Tokyo on Friday for the first time anywhere in the world. About 20 customers lined up outside the Harajuku store before its 11 a.m. opening, following Bolt's world record performances in the 100 and 200 meters at the ongoing world athletics championships in Berlin.
Aug 22 Japan, Papua New Guinea agree to double Narita-Port Moresby flights (AP)
 Japan and Papua New Guinea have agreed to allow a Papua New Guinean airline to double the number of round-trip flights between Narita and Port Moresby to two per week, the Japanese transport ministry said Friday.
Aug 22 Forged JTB coupons used in Tokyo (Japan Times)
 JTB Corp. said Friday that forged JTB gift coupons totaling ¥7.31 million have been used in Tokyo to make purchases. JTB and credit card firm JCB Co., its business partner, have reported the forgery to the Metropolitan Police Department and called on affiliated businesses that accept JTB Nice Gift coupons to guard against possible use of the counterfeits, according to the major travel agency.
Aug 21 SMBC to offer forex by mail (Asahi)
 Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. from Monday will offer a new service by which customers can mail in cash or traveler's checks in foreign currencies to the bank for yen exchange and deposit into bank accounts, the company said. SMBC is the first domestic bank to offer the service. Customers do not need to hold an account with the bank to use the service, as the yen amounts can be transferred to accounts at other banks.
Aug 21 Itochu starts talks to buy am/pm stores (Yomiuri)
 The parent company of am/pm Japan Co., the country's seventh-largest convenience store chain operator, has chosen major trading firm Itochu Corp. as its most favored candidate to buy the convenience store chain, it was learned Thursday. Itochu has the third-largest convenience store chain, FamilyMart Co., under its wing. It expects to achieve improved results by operating am/pm alongside FamilyMart.
Aug 21 Battery-boosted bikes a hit with moms, firms (Japan Times)
 Tokyo housewife Chie Igawa, 38, is part of a trend that's transforming the streets, zipping her kids around on a battery-boosted bicycle without breaking a sweat or having to worry about traffic rules. Domestic sales of the bikes eclipsed those of scooters for the first time last year and have jumped 24 percent since January.
Aug 20 Gov't expects sharp growth in search engine online ads (AP)
 The market for search engine online advertisements is expected to grow to 193.5 billion yen in fiscal 2013, up about threefold from fiscal 2005, the communications ministry said Thursday. The sharp growth is likely as a substantial number of surveyed companies recognize the effectiveness of such advertisements, said the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.
Aug 20 Toyota falling behind rivals in race to go electric (New York Times)
 Despite Toyota's image as the world's greenest automaker, the company that brought us the Prius - totem of the environmentally conscious - has fallen behind in the race for the all-electric car. Mitsubishi Motors started leasing its all-electric vehicle, the i-MiEV, in June. Next year, Nissan Motor is set to release its electric car, the Leaf. But Toyota does not plan to introduce an all-electric car until 2012. Instead, later this year, it plans to introduce a plug-in electric-gasoline hybrid, and only a few hundred initially.
Aug 20 Isetan Mitsukoshi to open Kansai's largest men's dept (Yomiuri)
 A new department store to be opened in Kita Ward, Osaka, by Isetan Mitsukoshi Holdings in spring 2011 will have the largest men's fashion section in the Kansai region, it was learned Wednesday. The men's section of the new JR Osaka Isetan Mitsukoshi department store will take up more than 5,000 square meters, more than 10 percent of the 50,000-square-meter store.
Aug 20 Starting up Net portal for women turns into lifetime career choice (Japan Times)
 Kikuko Yano was searching for a job she could do her entire life, and found it in the Internet firm she started on her own. Yano's career as a magazine editor helped her found cafeglobe.com, a front-runner in Internet portals catering to working Japanese women.
Aug 20 Suntory to debut nonalcoholic beer (Japan Times)
 Suntory Liquors Ltd. said Tuesday it will launch a nonalcoholic drink that tastes similar to beer called Suntory Fine Zero in late September, adding to the already keen competition to sell such beverages. The new drink will hit the market Sept. 29 to compete with Kirin Brewery Co.'s Kirin Free, launched in April, and Asahi Breweries Ltd.'s Asahi Point Zero, which will debut Sept. 1.
Aug 19 ANA reintroducing fuel surcharges; JAL expected to follow (Mainichi)
 All Nippon Airways (ANA) has announced that it will be reviving fuel surcharges on international flights from October. The highest surcharge will be levied on flights to Europe and the U.S., at 7,000 yen each way. Others include 4,000 yen on flights to Hawaii and India, 3,000 yen for Thailand, Singapore and Malaysia, and 1,500 yen for flights to Hong Kong, Taiwan and destinations in China.
Aug 19 Japan Inc eyes M&A rebound (Reuters)
 Japan Inc. spent nearly 70 billion USD buying companies abroad in 2008, but after a slow six months, M&A may return into fashion.
Aug 19 Old suits to give young jobless new look in quest to find work (Asahi)
 For the swollen ranks of jobless youth, the prospect of secure and steady work is dim at the best of times. But such is the self-compounding nature of their situation that many don't have enough money to spend on a suit--the one item of clothing that could make the difference in their quest to impress an employer and break the cycle of hardship.
Aug 19 Big in Japan: Chevrolet Camaro reportedly already sold out in Nippon (autoblog.com)
 Sales of the born-again Chevrolet Camaro have been notably strong in its first few months on the market here in the United States, even beating its longtime crosstown rival from Ford in June and July. Now, word comes from General Motors Asia Pacific that the Bowtie's latest muscle car is a hit (of sorts) in Japan as well.
Aug 19 Shutdown hurts Chubu Electric (Japan Times)
 Chubu Electric Power Co., which halted its two functioning nuclear reactors after an earthquake last week, said the closure is costing ¥400 million a day. Chubu said the Hamaoka plant, which powers Nagoya, Japan's third-biggest city, will take at least three to four weeks to restart.
Aug 18 Toyota spent $1.4M lobbying in 2nd quarter (AP)
 Toyota Motor North America Inc. spent $1.4 million in the second quarter to lobby on vehicle safety and other issues, according to a recent regulatory filing. The Japanese automaker also lobbied the federal government on labor issues, including the Employee Free Choice Act, a controversial bill that seeks to lower barriers to union organization.
Aug 18 Classics' artsy paperback jacket makeovers a hit (Japan Times)
 A young "idol" with paperback in hand standing in a high school classroom isn't what one would expect to see on the cover of Natsume Soseki's literary classic "Botchan." But putting a new face on old masterpieces has become a print industry trend, with both large and small publishers releasing paperbacks of well-known literature featuring creative cover designs in an attempt to expand sales and readership.
Aug 18 Ajinomoto eyes M&As in India, other Asian, African markets (Japan Times)
 Ajinomoto Co. may consider mergers and acquisitions in India and other overseas markets where it intends to strengthen its operations, according to Masatoshi Ito, president of the Japanese food maker.
Aug 17 Jetstar pitches to wealthy Japanese (stuff.co.nz)
 Jetstar plans to funnel lucrative Japanese tourists to New Zealand to boost its domestic and trans-Tasman flights. The budget airline will offer a seamless daily connection from Tokyo and Osaka to Auckland via the Gold Coast from October 25. Japan was New Zealand's fifth-largest tourism market, attracting more than 88,000 visitors in the year to June, worth $422 million a year, half of what it was a few years ago.
By J.S. on Aug 25, 2009



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