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January 15, 2004
    
Kawasho, Metal One Announce Joint Blanking Venture
 

Kawasho Corporation (headquartered in Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; President: Hiroo Naruki) and Metal One Corporation (headquartered in Minato-ku, Tokyo; President: Masashi Mizutani) announced their intention to establish a joint blanking operation in February 2004. The new company, Mizushima Metal Products Corporation, will be based in the Mizushima area of Kurashiki-shi, Okayama Prefecture. In anticipation of increased demand from automakers and parts manufacturers, the joint venture will strengthen the two parent companies' steel sheet blanking business1, with annual production projected at 140,000 tonnes.

Kawasho Corporation intends to further expand its blanking business in Japan, while Metal One expects to enter the domestic blanking market by capitalizing on the know-how it has acquired overseas.

The new company will take over the blanking operations of Mizushima Steel Corporation (a subsidiary of Kawasho Corporation). A new production line will be added for further specialization and unified management of the blanking business. As a result, finished products with higher quality and less cost will be shipped faster to automakers and auto parts manufacturers through further improved efficiency and cost reduction.

The output in the initial year (ending December 2005) is expected to be about 140,000 tonnes, with sales proceeds totaling some ¥12 billion. For further details, please see below.

1Blanking is cutting or shearing large sheets of steel into pieces for doors, roofs and other auto parts, making them suitable for the next operation, in this case die pressing.

Company Outline    
  1. Name:   Mizushima Metal Products Corporation
  2. Headquarters:   1-4 Kawasaki-dori, Mizushima, Kurashiki-shi, Okayama
(on the premises of Western Japan Works, JFE Steel Corporation)
  3. Legal representative:   Takeshi Higashi, president
(post presently held by president of Mizushima Steel Corporation)
  4. Capitalization:   ¥300 million
  5. Capital stake of parent firms:
  Kawasho Corporation, 60%; Metal One, 40%
  6. Lines of business:   Blanking and marketing of blanked products
  7. No. of employees:   27
  8. Book closing day:   December 31 (scheduled)
  9. Expected annual sales:   About ¥12 billion (in the term ending December 2005)

<For supplementary reference>
Mizushima Steel Corporation
  1. Headquarters:   1-4 Kawasaki-dori, Mizushima, Kurashiki-shi, Okayama
  2. Legal representative:   Takeshi Higashi, president
  3. Established:   November 1, 1966
  4. Paid-in capital:   ¥50 million
  5. Capital stake of parent firms:   Kawasho Corporation, 60%; Sanyo Steel Machinery
Industries, 20%; Kyushu Tech, 10%; Hokuriku Steel, 10%
  6. Line of business:   Steel sheet machining (slitting, 49%; blanking, 30%; leveler shearing, 21%)
  7. No. of employees:   80
  8. Book closing day:   March 31
  9. Annual sales:   About ¥14 billion (in the term ending March 2003)
         
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