News Releases


Hitachi to Reform R&D Framework to Spur Global Growth of the Social Innovation Business

-- Plans to Increase R&D Personnel at Four Overseas Business Bases, Reorganize Eight Domestic Research Laboratories into Three --

Tokyo, January 17, 2011 ― Hitachi, Ltd. (NYSE:HIT / TSE:6501) today announced the first reformation of the Company's R&D framework in a quarter-century to take place on April 1, 2011. The move is part of Hitachi's plan to drive global growth of the Social Innovation Business.

In concrete terms, Hitachi will reorganize its research laboratories in Japan into three enhanced centers, while expanding the role of locally-led research overseas. Overseas, Hitachi plans to accelerate building a global R&D framework dedicated to supporting growth strategies for each region, centered on the four business bases, China, Europe, the Americas and Asia. To accelerate this process and strengthen R&D targeting local needs, Hitachi will double the number of overseas R&D personnel, currently about 150, in fiscal 2012. This will also include creation of a new R&D base in India.

In Japan, Hitachi will promote robust, integrated research to spearhead Social Innovation Business and create a research framework dedicated to building Hitachi’s platform for the next 100 years of growth. Specifically, Hitachi will reorganize its six corporate research laboratories and two divisional laboratories into three research centers: (1) the Central Research Laboratory (a), focused on seamless integrated research from basic through to application level; (2) the Hitachi Research Laboratory (a), dedicated to supporting the Social Innovation Business, mainly working on social infrastructure; and (3) the Yokohama Research Laboratory (a), which will conduct R&D focused on IT platform technologies and manufacturing technologies.

In addition, the Technology Strategy Office (a) within the Research and Development Group will oversee technology strategies for the entire Hitachi Group, and formulate medium- and long-term technology and development plans linked with business strategies.

Note (a): tentative names

Since its foundation in 1910, Hitachi has been expanding its business by following its corporate credo “contributing to society through the development of superior, original technologies and products“ , and actively worked on the R&D activities that support it. Hitachi established the Hitachi Research Laboratory in 1934, and the Central Research Laboratory in 1942. Since then, the company has established new laboratories and reorganized existing ones as its business domains expanded and changed. By 1985, Hitachi had built a framework of six corporate R&D laboratories. In 2010 the Group celebrated its 100th year of business.

Looking ahead to the next 100 years, Hitachi is stepping up measures to realize growth globally through its Social Innovation Business. To this end, Hitachi is reforming its R&D framework to expand locally-led research overseas, while strengthening the role of Hitachi’s domestic research centers that promulgate advanced technologies throughout the world. The objective is to accelerate the development of technologies to underpin the Social Innovation Business, and increase R&D efficiency.