Hankook Tire Co. Ltd. has appointed Chief Technology Officer Hwi Joong Kim to its board of directors. The move reflects the strategic importance of technology for the company.
Kim, who also will retain his responsibilities as chief production officer, is responsible for the overall management of research and development, and manufacturing.
"Technological innovation has been a cornerstone in fueling the profitability of our company and enhancing the reputation of the quality of our products," he says. "This is a natural progression to further enhance the role of technology and product quality, critical in the competitive global automotive industry."
CEO Seung Hwa Suh says the company has set "robust" business goals to grow the company and achieve a 4% global market share by 2011, the 70th anniversary of the company, "and this specialization of the executive decision making process is an integral part of our long-term business strategy.
"Technological innovation, brand value and differentiation and global management structures are key factors in sustaining our rise in the global automotive industry and in delivering value and quality to our customers."
Kim joined Hankook in 1970. Since 1998, he has overseen future-orientated tire projects such as the Hankook Runflat System (HRS) and Hankook Hybrid System (HHS) projects, and the development and enhancement of ultra-high performance tires. He was also a driving force behind the company's strategy of pursuing partnerships with the world's major automobile makers.