Working with Industry, Government, and Academia

Front and center in the Mitsui Chemicals Group’s Long-term Business Plan as it looks toward 2025 is the promotion of “customer-driven innovation.” With this in mind, it is vitally important that the Group quickly uncover the needs and requirements of customers and end-users in downstream domains. The Mitsui Chemicals Group will actively promote collaboration with industry, government, and academia throughout its R&D process in order to further deepen its capabilities in such core technological fields as organic and polymer chemistry, which it has nurtured over many years, and to forge a presence in new technology fields that are more in line with the values of downstream customers and end-users, an area in which the Group has been weak.

Management System

Policy

Serving as a technology platform, the Mitsui Chemicals Group maintains technologies and personnel that lay at the heart of its efforts to create a diverse array of products and services. Based on these platforms, we are uncovering the technologies necessary to realize customer-driven innovation while putting forward and carrying out utilization plans encompassing a wide range of areas including open innovation in a bid to secure the aforementioned technologies. Moreover, we are also overseeing efforts to strengthen technologies in core domains and develop human resources in line with technological platforms.

System and Responsible Officers

With the responsible director in charge of the R&D Center, R&D managers periodically hold the R&D Strategy Conference and other meetings. Through each avenue, the Group is deliberating on strategies and management issues as they relate to R&D while working to put forward solutions.

Monitoring Methods

We use a Stage Gate System during product development in an effort to visualize the degree of progress made. Using this system, we are able to make efficient and rational decisions about continuing or discontinuing development, resource allocation, and other issues.
We are taking steps to assess whether there is any waste or delay in the development process based on our technological platforms and Stage Gate System. Every effort is being made to ensure efficient operations. We have also received high marks from public institutions for our joint research projects with industry, government, and academia.

Goals and Results

Goals for Fiscal 2016

  • Promote new business/product development through external collaboration
  • Develop innovative technologies by participating in joint research projects
  • Strengthen global networks

Fiscal 2016 Results and Assessment

Level achieved: A

  • Promoted new business/product development through external collaboration: new diagnostics and consulting business for photovoltaic power generation (PI Potovoltaik-Institut Berlin AG), joint development of the world’s highest magnification stamp loupe (Hopnic Laboratory), metal resin integral molding technology (Taisei Plas Co., Ltd.), and lithium-ion battery safety materials (Industrial Technology Research Institute of Taiwan)
  • Developed innovative technologies by participating in joint research projects: Artificial Photosynthesis Project (ARPChem), selected as a program in the Innovation Setup Scheme in collaboration with government and academia by the Japan Agency for medical Research and Development (AMED), and development of a non-edible plant-based chemical manufacturing process (New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization NEDO)
  • Strengthened global networks: Promoted projects at the Mitsui Chemicals Singapore R&D Centre and participated in the 2016 Mitsui Chemicals Catalysis Science Award lectures, etc.

Priorities for Fiscal 2017

  • Promote open innovation activities
  • Promote joint research projects
  • Verify business models that employ CVC
CVC (Corporate Venture Capital): Investment activities targeting external venture companies undertaken by business entities.

* Levels of achievement based on self-assessment: A: 95% or more, B: 70% or more and less than 95%, C: less than 70%