Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings, Japan’s largest chemical maker, has named Jean-Marc Gilson, CEO of plant-ingredients maker Roquette Frères (Lestrem, France), as its next CEO, effective 1 April 2021. Gilson, a Belgian-US dual citizen, will take over the role from Hitoshi Ochi. Gilson previously held senior leadership roles at Dow Corning and Avantor.
Mitsubishi Chemical said it searched globally for candidates, both inside and external, after Ochi expressed his intent to retire at the end of Mitsubishi Chemical’s current fiscal year, which coincides with the end of the company’s current medium-term management plan.
Mitsubishi Chemical outside director Takayuki Hashimoto, chair of the nominating committee, said the criteria for evaluation included an ability to build a strategic vision and strategy, foreseeing the post-COVID 19 world, that integrates the company’s healthcare business with the high-value added chemicals and performance materials; capability of improving corporate value particularly from the perspective of shareholders and investors; and the ability to “decisively implement portfolio transformation through strong leadership.”
Hashimoto said three internal and four external candidates were evaluated. “Given his performance, competencies and enthusiasm to lead the company, we determined that Jean-Marc Gilson is the optimal choice to lead [Mitsubishi Chemical] realizing our vision of sustainable growth by accelerating our portfolio transformation and globally undertaking initiatives to solve social issues based on the group philosophy,” Mitsubishi Chemical said in a statement.
JSR Corp. (Tokyo) last year appointed American Eric Johnson, previously president of JSR Micro and general manager of its life sciences business, as CEO.
By Kartik Kohli
France has launched an offshore green hydrogen production platform at the country’s Port of Saint-Nazaire this week, along with its first offshore wind farm. The hydrogen plant, which its operators say is the world’s first facility of its type, coincides with the launch of another “first of its kind” facility in Sweden dedicated to storing hydrogen in an underground lined rock cavern (LRC).
The project sets up the Hydrogen Valley in Rome, the first industrial-scale technological hub for the development of the national supply chain for the production, transport, storage and use of hydrogen for the decarbonization of industrial processes and for sustainable mobility.
At first glance, hydrogen seems to be the perfect solution to our energy needs. It doesn’t produce any carbon dioxide when used. It can store energy for long periods of time. It doesn’t leave behind hazardous waste materials, like nuclear does. And it doesn’t require large swathes of land to be flooded, like hydroelectricity. Seems too good to be true. So…what’s the catch?