Chairman, CEO, and representative director of INCJ, Ltd.
Toshiyuki Shiga was born in Wakayama City in 1953 before moving to Shingu City, Uchita Town in the Naga district (the present-day Kinokawa City) and then back to Wakayama City as his father was transferred. As a result, he’s lived all around the Kii Peninsula. He joined Nissan Motor Corporation in 1976 when he graduated from college. He had been an ardent fan of the company since he was little. His first assignment was to the marine products division--a sort of tributary of the larger Nissan river--but the small size of the department offered an excellent chance to master the skill of planning and acting on his own. Later he was transferred to a department responsible for automobile exports. After a five-year assignment in Jakarta, his responsibilities shifted to management planning, and he was involved with negotiations to establish the alliance with Renault. He served as a managing director, chief operating officer, and vice chairman before retiring as a director of Nissan this June. Since 2015 he’s served as chairman, CEO, and representative director of INCJ, Ltd., (formerly the Innovation Network Corporation of Japan).
When I lived in Shingu City, where I attended elementary and middle school, I took kendo lessons at a dojo located at Kumano Hayatama Taisha Grand Shrine, which is one of Kumano Sanzan, and I attended elementary school near Kamikura-jinja Shrine, which enjoys a close association with the yatagarasu raven, the symbol of Kumano. When I climbed the steep stone stairs of Mt. Kamikurayama and arrived at the enormous rock enshrined there, even as an elementary school student I felt the mysterious power of the place wash over me. I joined the Biology Club at Naga High School and attended a camp at a Koyasan Shukubo lodgings. We went bird-watching near Koyasan early in the morning on moss-covered ground deep in the woods underneath tall Koya cedar trees that blocked the light. The complete silence and moist air led us toward a mysterious world. When we listened carefully, we heard the cries of wild birds, but I also remember a mysterious feeling that we were hearing the murmurs of the gods in the forest. Koyasan and the Kumano Kodo combine with the mysteriousness of their natural surroundings to create a supernatural sensation. Oddly, every time I visit I find myself looking back on how I've lived, and I experience a forward-looking power. I hope that the legacy created by the place’s history and natural beauty will be carefully preserved and that as many people as possible will be able to experience this mysterious place.