Message from President
To make all of our activities sustainable, in order to become an enterprise that will be continuously chosen by employees, customers, and society
Representative director and presidentShigeru Tsunokake
Origin of our sustainability
Our company was established in 1917, and in 1938, started the manufacturing of ferroalloys, which comprise our current core businesses. Ferroalloys are secondary materials required for producing “iron and steel,” that are the core material for all kinds of industries and products. The commencement of ferroalloy manufacturing indicates that our company hoped to contribute to the development of Japanese industry for the support and betterment of affluent living for the Japanese people, that was still lagging behind the industries in Europe and the U.S.
At present, it is operated by Tohoku Sustainable & Renewable Energy Co. Inc., generating 23,500 kW of electric power.
While nurturing the ferroalloy manufacturing business steadily, the founder Shigenori Tomioka constructed Japan’s first geothermal power plant in Iwate Prefecture in 1966, and launched a business that would become the current energy & environmental business. Furthermore, around that time, it is said that Tomioka had a dream of putting hydrogen energy into practice.
Reviewing this corporate history, we can imagine the “aspiration” of the founder who felt that the meanings of existence of our company lie in the philosophy of “supporting the development of many industries and enriching the living of people” and in order to realize them, it is necessary to use energy that is stable and will not pollute or destroy the natural or living environment, and he pursued such energy.
I cannot help but become certain that his aspirations are in line with today’s policies for sustainability and SDGs: “The realization of the affluent, sustainable living of people will lead to the sustainable development of our company.”
I think that our company needs to keep conveying the “aspirations” of pioneering predecessors, including the founder, to future generations. These “aspirations” motivate our company to engage in “initiatives for sustainability.”
Our company’s businesses that would contribute to the realization of a sustainable society
Currently, the three major pillars of our company are “the ferroalloy business,” “the functional material business,” and “the energy & environment business.” As the times have changed, these three businesses have grown into those that are closely related to the “sustainable society” and significantly contribute to its realization.
In order to cope with climate change and decarbonize our society, the automobile industry replaced gasoline engine vehicles with electric vehicles in a rapid fashion. The demand for “special ferrosilicon” in our “ferroalloy business,” as “hydrogen storage alloy for negative electrodes” and “high-capacity negative-electrode materials for lithium-ion batteries” in the “functional material business,” etc., that are used for motors of electric vehicles, has grown considerably in recent years, in response to the acceleration of electrification.
- Ingots (hydrogen storage alloy)
- -2-mm products (hydrogen storage alloy)
- -200-MESH products (hydrogen storage alloy)
Regarding future accumulation of used batteries after the distribution of EVs, projects for recycling resources based on the material recycling technologies for used nickel-hydrogen batteries and lithium-ion batteries have been started.
Like this, our business itself is changing or growing into the one that is directly linked to decarbonization and the recycling of resources. This implies that the existence of our company is closely related to the realization of a “sustainable recycling society.”
To make all of activities related to our company “sustainable”
In order to remain an entity needed by society and keep contributing to the realization of “a sustainable society,” our company needs to grow and advance in a sustainable manner.
Our company can grow and advance in a sustainable manner, not only if we transform not only our production technologies and products, but also business activities themselves into sustainable ones with low environmental burdens, and realize a company in which employees can be proud of their jobs and work cheerfully, enjoyably, and healthily, and offer value exceeding the expectations of customers by thinking ahead and jointly triggering innovation.
Keeping them in mind, I declared that “I will work on the realization of the ideal state of our company, that is, a good company, based on the sustainability management” when I was appointed as president.
To do so, I recognized “the response to climate change,” “the development of a workplace where employees can work healthily and feel that their jobs are worthwhile,” and “dealing with responsible production and supply” as “important issues for sustainability,” and engage in intensive measures.
I believe that our ideal good company can be realized, if we become “sustainable” and are continuously chosen by customers, by inheriting the aspirations of predecessors, who operated business under the pioneering policy for “sustainability.”