About the passing of Chairman Chihiro Kanagawa


It is with great sadness that Shin-Etsu Chemical Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as the Company) today announced the passing of Chihiro Kanagawa, Chairman of the Company. Mr. Kanagawa passed away on January 1, 2023 because of pneumonia. We would like to express our sincere gratitude for your kindness during his lifetime.

A private funeral has been held attended by close family members, and his family would like to request privacy at this difficult time and they will decline any condorence offers. A company memorial service is planned to be held at a later date.

Name of deceased: Chihiro Kanagawa
Date of birth: March 15, 1926
Date of death: Sunday, January 1, 2023, 6:05 am, age 96

Mr. Kanagawa graduated from the No.6 Higher School in 1947 and graduated from the University of Tokyo, Faculty of Law in 1950, and joined Kyokuto Bussan Kaisha, Ltd. (currently Mitsui & Co., Ltd.). After joining the Company in 1962 and developing overseas business in Europe, Central America, and South America one after another at the International Division, in 1973 he established Shintech, Inc. (headquartered in Texas, USA) as a joint-venture company with an American company based on his own planning. Three years later, the Company purchased all Shintech shares held by the joint-venture partner. As the result, Shintech became a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company, and in 1978 he took office as president of Shintech. Based on the conviction that “PVC is an excellent resin that contributes to society and the environment, and the demand continues to grow,” he repeatedly carried out large-scale PVC plant expansions with Shintech’s own funds and continued “full production, full sales.” Shintech grew into the world’s largest PVC manufacturer.

At the Company, in 1990 he was appointed President after serving as General Manager of the International Division, Senior Managing Director, General Manager of the PVC Division, and Executive Vice President. In the harsh business environment after the bursting of the bubble economy in Japan, he introduced the rational management practiced in the management of Shintech into the Company, and built a corporate structure that is strong against recession. At the same time, he worked to develop new businesses such as photoresists. Overcoming the severe external environment, including the bursting of the IT bubble, he achieved income growth for 15 consecutive years from the fiscal year ended March 1994, significantly expanding the Company’s earnings. Even after being appointed Chairman in 2010, he continued to contribute to the growth of the Shin-Etsu Group.

In the latter half of the 1990s, he affirmed that IR is the job to be done by the top management. He held numerous dialogues with investors and sell-side analysts and continued to explain management and businesses in his own words. Focusing on the importance of management supervision early on, in 2001 he invited the former Chairman and CEO of Dow Chemical to serve as an Outside Director. Since then, he continued to invite leading figures and business leaders from various fields to serve as Outside Directors. In 2002 he established the Officers’ Remuneration Committee, promoting the strengthening and transparency of corporate governance. In the Company’s production activities, he focused on making safety the top priority, the importance of quality, environmental measures, and contributing to the local community. With a sense of responsibility for the lives and happiness of the employees and their families, he motivated and devoted himself wholeheartedly to his daily work.

In parallel with serving as Chairman of the Company, in 1998 he was appointed the first Chairman of the Vinyl Environment Council and worked to spread a correct understanding of PVC and develop the PVC industry. In 2001 he also assumed the office of Chairman of the International Friendship Exchange Council and made efforts to deepen exchanges and mutual understanding with various countries in the private sector toward world peace.

[President Yasuhiko Saitoh]
“Mr. Kanagawa propelled Shin-Etsu Chemical to growth and developed it into a global chemical company during his tenure as president. During that time, he also went out of his way to instill the company with his management method, “Kanagawa Management.” I myself have been fortunate enough to work under him for many years. The experience and way of thinking I gained in those years form the backbone of my work. Without his management, Shin-Etsu Chemical would not have been what it is today. We are determined to further grow our company upon the foundation laid by him. I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to Mr. Kanagawa for his great contributions and achievements, and I would like to express my sincere condolences. ”

For inquiries about this matter, please contact

    • Shin-Etsu Chemical Co., Ltd.
    • Public Relations Dept.
    • Shinji Fukui
    • Tel: 03-6812-2340, or from outside Japan: 81-3-6812-2340
    • Fax: 03-6812-2341, or from outside Japan: 81-3-6812-2341
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