Toyota Boshoku Corp., a car seat manufacturer that the Toyota Group has closely held as supplier, wants to expand its sales to rival carmakers. The company is also seeing big opportunities in the European region.
The company generates around 97 percent of its international sales from Toyota Motor Corp. However, the share of non-Toyota sales will increase from 3 percent to 7 percent, after the purchase of the interior trim business of European supplier Polytec Holding AG in June.
A great part of the rise in non-Toyota sales will initially be derived from interior items like the ceiling liners and door trim. Polytec has eight plants in South Africa, Germany and Poland, and is already manufacturing those products for Opel, Volkswagen, Daimler and BMW.
However, Toyota Boshoku is thinking of expanding its seat sales as well. Aside from Toyota, the car seat manufacturer delivers its products to only one automaker -- General Motors in Mexico for the Saab 9-4x and Cadillac SRX SUVs.
Beginning 2013, Toyota Boshoku expects to provide seats and back frames to BMW. In an interview last August 2, Executive Managing Officer Kazuhiko Miyadera stated that the company’s purchase of Polytec will give it a chance to transact business with European OEMs. In addition, Miyadera said that with Toyota Boshoku, which is a group company of Toyota, the transaction would not be easy.
The ties that Toyota Boshoku have to Toyota Motor Corp. are strong. The automaker controls 39 percent of the company, compared to about 22 percent for fellow Group suppliers Aisin Seiki and Denso.
Shuhei Toyoda, the president of Toyota Boshoku, is also a distant relative of Toyota Motor President Akio Toyoda. He is also a former head of the European operations of Toyota Motor. Moreover, Miyadera is another Toyota Motor veteran, serving the company 31 years prior to joining Boshoku in 2009.