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Conomos leaves the building

Salesman: John Conomos guided Toyota to market leadership in Australia.

Legendary industry figure finally walks away from Toyota Australia after 27 years

13 Jun 2008

AFTER almost three decades as one of the motor industry’s most charismatic leaders, John Conomos will finally retire from Toyota Motor Company Australia – the company he guided to the powerhouse it is today – on June 30.

Two years ago he stood down TMCA’s executive chairman to become chairman emeritus and principal policy advisor, easing the transition to a post-Conomos era for the company, but the latest move finally sees him leave the building.

However, Mr Conomos is not lost to the industry because the self-confessed “humble truck salesman” will remain as chairman of Hino Motor Sales Australia.

 center imageHe also remains, for now at least, the president of the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries – a position that rotates between the major car companies on a regular basis and which Mr Conomos has held since March 2006.

Mr Conomos joined Toyota in 1981 and not only rose to the top in Australia, but made it to the board of Toyota Motor Corporation in Japan in 2004, a role he retired from in 2006.

He was recognised for his contribution to the automotive industry in the 2005 Queen's Birthday Honours List with an Order of Australia.

With this final break from Toyota, he will now also retire from the boards of Sydney City Toyota, Toyota Financial Services and Toyota New Zealand.

“It has been a privilege to work in what I consider the most exciting and dynamic industry in the world,” said Mr Conomos, whose overall automotive career exceeds 40 years and includes a period with British Leyland and Daihatsu.

“I have been extremely fortunate to meet and work side-by-side with some truly remarkable people both in Australia and across the world.”

Toyota Australia president Max Yasuda said that Mr Conomos had been an inspirational industry leader.

“John’s retirement from Toyota marks the end of an amazing era for the Australian industry,” said Mr Yasuda.

“We appreciate his valuable expertise, support and dedication through many challenging times and extend our very best wishes to him and his wife Barbara for a long and fulfilling retirement.”

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