Japan: Asahi appoints new CEO - no surprises

At this year’s annual general meeting of shareholders on March 25, Asahi Group Holdings will appoint Atsushi Katsuki (61) to succeed Akiyoshi Koji (69) as the new group’s CEO. Mr. Katsuki has been working for Asahi since 2002. From October 2011 on he headed the business in Australia. In 2017 he was appointed a director of Asahi Group Holdings and in March 2019 he was appointed Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the group.

Last year, Mr. Katasuki was serving as Senior Managing Director and Senior Managing Executive Director and was responsible for finance, management strategy, and the domestic alcoholic beverage business, soft drinks business, and food business as CFO. In addition he played an important role in the issuance of new shares through public offering for the first time in 30 years. He has also a track record that includes sophisticating cash flow management, which is vital to the company’s sustainable growth and enhancement of corporate value over the medium- to long-term, and taking the lead for business performance recovery for domestic business under the environment of the global spread of COVID-19.

Mr. Koji, who is to leave his office soon, has been CEO of the Japanese brewing group since 2018. He  will turn 70  in November and will become chairman of the group.

Asahi expects for 2021 an operating profit of JPY 216 billion (USD 2.06bn) in 2021, up 60% from 2020 when sales fell 33% to JPY 135 billion (USD 1.41bn) and exceeding the JPY 201 billion (USD 2.01bn) recorded in 2019.

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