Toyota Profits Up

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AP Wire | 05/10/2006 | Toyota's quarterly profit jumps 39 percent

Quarterly business update on Toyota, including some executive changes.

Just about the only recent trouble Toyota has encountered is a $190 million sexual harassment lawsuit filed last week against the president and CEO of Toyota Motor North America, Hidetaka Otaka.

Toyota said Tuesday that Otaka, 65, has stepped down, although he claims he is innocent of the charges brought by Sayaka Kobayashi, his former personal assistant, who claimed he made repeated unwanted sexual advances.

I wonder if “stepped down” means resigning from the company? Previously it was announced he was pulled from the US role back into what sounded like a smaller role in Japan with an affiliated company (an embarrassing demotion, I'm sure).

In another shuffle, Toyota said Wednesday that Chairman Hiroshi Okuda, who oversaw Toyota's rise in recent years as a global automaker, will step down to senior adviser while staying on as member of the board.

Fujio Cho, former president and now vice chairman, who helped Toyota establish itself as a member of corporate America, replaces Okuda as chairman, the company said in a statement.

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