High Performance Tools
The distance between Aichi and Baden-Württemberg is more than 9,000 kilometres as the crow flies. With his company OSG, Yasushi Suzuki moves between these two worlds and cultures – and has found that the two have far more common ground than differences. The Japanese prefecture of Aichi is also a strong economic centre for companies from the automotive industry and major machinery manufacturers.
“A number of world-famous companies have their headquarters in Aichi. Big names such as Toyota, Mitsubishi, Honda, Suzuki or Yamaha,” he says. “This means Aichi and Baden-Württemberg have a similar structure.”
The OSG Corporation was founded in Aichi more than 80 years ago – today the company is the world’s largest manufacturer of round cutting tools with 29 locations, 5 production plants and over 6,000 employees – 105 of whom are based in Göppingen.
“As I was looking for the best location for OSG in Germany in 2002, there were two candidates: Düsseldorf and Stuttgart,” Yasushi Suzuki recalls. “It’s easier for us Japanese to live in Düsseldorf.” But OSG wasn’t looking for the most comfortable place, it was looking for the best: “We wanted to be close to our customers.” Customers who often come from the automotive and supplier industries.
“Ichigo, ichie – one time, one Meeting”
This fact – and the energetic support provided by the state of Baden-Württemberg – were the decisive points for him. “From the state we have received a great deal of help and good recommendations.” Including those that helped him swiftly build up a network.
“I have met many, many people here – lawyers, tax consultants, other entrepreneurs – and it was these personal relationships that have made us successful here.” Yasushi Suzuki pauses, ponders, searches for the right words – and finds them in a Japanese saying: “Ichigo, ichie – one time, one meeting.”
It means that every moment of life is both unique and unrepeatable and that every opportunity comes but once. Yasushi Suzuki and his company OSG have certainly made the most of it.