After 40 years of milestones and leadership in the commercial bus and trucking segment, expect a stronger and more globally-attuned Hino brand as Pilipinas Hino, Inc. (PHI), the exclusive distributor of Hino trucks and buses in the country, progresses its growth targets under a new corporate name, Hino Motors Philippines Corporation (HMP).

Made possible via a new Joint Venture Agreement, investing partners Hino Motors, Ltd. and Marubeni Corporation of Japan now hold majority shares in HMP with increased equity shares of 70% and 20%, respectively. Filipino partners on the other hand hold a 10% share.

Present during the recent corporate re-launch at the New World Hotel were the top brass of HMP led by Chairman Vicente T. Mills, Jr., Hiroshi Aoki (President), Koji Ota (VP/ Marketing and Assistant to the President), Susumu Myokan (VP-Treasurer), Augusto S. Salcedo (VP/ General Sales Manager), Felipe S. Barroga (VP/ Comptroller), Mario N. Regala (VP/ Manufacturing) ñ and members of the media.

The event was also attended by Masakazu Ichikawa, Chairman of Hino Motors, Ltd.; Michihiko Ota, Vice Chairman of Marubeni Corporation; His Excellency Kazuhide Ishikawa, Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines; Ma. Corazon H. Dichosa, Director /BOI- Investment Policy & Planning Service and Atty. Winston T. Ginez, Chairman of LTFRB.

The latest move, according to Chairman Mills, only shows the Japanese investors' confidence and renewed interests to tap into the countryís growing economy and market potential.

“The upward momentum of our economy, plus the rapidly increasing consumer demand and growth potential of the commercial vehicle market as evidenced by Hinoís spectacular sales performance in 2014 made the corporate transition of PHI to HMP very timely,” said Mr. Salcedo.

HMP is keenly eyeing to increase production figures from 150 trucks/buses every month to building 350 units per month in the coming months or years. As for the production capacities of Hino, HMP is targeting to assemble around 120 per month from 30 units.

Other significant improvisations in the pipeline include revitalized direct marketing operations (increasing its current 15 full-line dealers which are strategically located over the Philippines) and strengthened “One Stop Shop” operations with its own Body Manufacturing and Maintenance Shop located in its facility in Canlubang, Laguna.

Prior to the new joint venture, PHI's strong positioning made it one of the fastest-growing brands in the truck segment, as evidenced by its impressive 20% market share in January-July 2015, a 6% jump from its previous performance in year 2014.

This year, PHI celebrated its “[email protected] Anniversary” a milestone built on its reputation as the only company that offers benchmark-leading customization; from assembling the vehicle, to building the body per the desired specification of the client, and further to vehicle maintenance, repair, and refurbishing and a three-year unlimited mileage warranty.

PHI has produced versatile trucks and buses that cater to various industries such as for logistics, healthcare (mobile clinics, X-ray vans and hospital buses), and government use, among others.

Moving forward via a strengthened partnership and a new name, HMP gears up for its next big milestones this year as it continues to provide loyal patrons with top-class, dependable value-for-money Hino trucks and buses.

“The new investment drastically increases our production, inventories, market and manufacturing capabilities. This makes the Hino brand stronger, better fitted and more responsive to diversified markets,” concluded Mr. Mills.