News 25 May 2010

General: Honda Australia MD Stuart Strickland set to retire

Managing director for Honda Australia Motorcycles & Power Equipment Australia (MPE), Stuart Strickland will retire effective 30 June, 2010, leaving behind a legacy of unparalleled influence in the Australian motorcycle, marine and power equipment industries.

Strickland started his journey with Honda in 1981, and in nearly 30 years with the company, held positions in all product areas of Honda’s business including stints as a state manager in Victoria, WA and NSW.

He was eventually promoted into the role of senior director in 1992 after taking on the responsibility of establishing ‘Honda MPE’ as a stand-alone company, and by 2006 was the first non Japanese citizen ever to be appointed to the position of managing director of a Honda motorcycles and power equipment subsidiary.

In his time with the company, Strickland oversaw sales of three million products worth over five billion dollars into the Australian market through Honda’s servicing dealer networks.

“I’ve appreciated the responsibility given to me as managing director these past few years and I leave with a great team of people in place that will continue to drive Honda’s business forward in Australia,” Strickland said.

“It’s been wonderful to be allowed to head up a company that has grown so much that it has become an industry leader in terms of product as well as safety. I’m very proud of what we have achieved, and of the staff who have made it happen. One of the things that gives me great reward is to see how our staff and Dealer network have developed over time, both personally and professionally.”

Strickland will also retire from his position as a board member of the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries where he represented the motorcycle industry for 23 years and claimed the title of longest serving board member in the history of the FCAI. In 2006, he was also bestowed the unique distinction of being presented with an FCAI Lifetime Membership Award.

On the future, Strickland said he hopes to see the motorcycle, power equipment and marine industries prosper further.

“I’d also like to see the government take a national approach on many issues,” he continued. “I’ve been a part of a number of positive changes within the motorcycle and power equipment industries including four-stroke engines overtaking two-strokes, as well as Honda pioneering the entry of four-stroke outboards into the mainstream marine market.”

“I really hope that government will move forward in the regulation of product emission levels. Honda has done a lot of great work in this regard and it is a shame to see that some companies are still allowed to bring in products that impact adversely on our environment.”

Upon Stuart Strickland’s retirement, Honda Australia will be headed up by Mr Zenjiro Sakurai. Mr Sakurai joined Honda in 1977, has worked for American Honda, as well serving as president for Honda Switzerland, director of the R&D Centre in Asaka, Japan and as president of A.P. Honda in Thailand prior to joining MPE.