Mitsuteru Tanigawa is the new CEO of Falken Tyre Europe GmbH. The 61-year-old Tanigawa replaced Masatsugu Nishino, who has moved to Turkey as president of Sumitomo Rubber AKO Lastik Sanayi ve Ticaret A.S.
Tanigawa joined Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd. (SRI) in 1980 and has developed a significant knowledge of the rubber industry, with particular expertise in tires, according to the company. His past experiences include being director of SRI’s Indonesian tire manufacturing as well as leading the sales activities in China beginning in 2005.
Since 2012, Tanigawa has worked for SRI’s Sports division, which develops and manufactures sporting goods such as golf clubs and tennis racquets. He was mainly responsible for the golf brands XXIO and SRIXON, leading to a deep passion for the sport. In March 2017, four years after first becoming a board member of the division, Tanigawa was appointed managing executive officer.
Tanigawa leads Falken’s expanding European operations from its headquarters outside Frankfurt, Germany. Alongside the growth in OE business for the Falken brand, Tanigawa will oversee the expansion of Falken’s distribution network, which has accelerated thanks to the acquisition of Micheldever Tyre Services in the UK in 2017.
“Falken is still a young brand,” says Tanigawa. "Thanks to the efforts of the dynamic team in Europe, it has become an established and trusted brand for consumers and the automobile industry."
As part of his new duties, Nishino will oversee SRI's manufacturing facility in Cankiri, Turkey. He joined SRI in 1984, and previously held positions as CEO of SRI's largest sales office in Tokyo and vice president of operations in Turkey.
Over the last two and half years, Nishino played an instrumental role in Falken's expansion in Europe, notably the rise of OE contracts and the acquisition of Micheldever Tyre Services.