Segment-Specific Strategies
Environment Business Group

A profit center for supporting revenues Developing products that contribute to carbon neutrality

Senior Vice President Group Executive, Environment Business Group Jun Mori

Formerly known as the Ceramic Products Business Group, the newly launched Environment Business Group encompasses all environment-related needs by expanding beyond automotive-related products to include markets related to carbon neutrality, which are expected to see global market expansion moving forward. The new group name "Environment" represents the NGK Group's commitment to achieving new growth by engaging in businesses that use our unique ceramic technologies to make broad contribution to the environment.

It has been nearly 50 years since we began the manufacturing and sales of HONEYCERAM, ceramic substrates for automotive catalytic converters, in 1976. The NGK Group possesses technology that we have polished over the years while continuously adapting to changes in society and our business circumstances. We have been accumulating the knowhow related to environmental purification over the years ,which could apply in a variety of fields. With the accelerating shift from automobiles to electric vehicles (EVs), we see this period of change as a major opportunity and will work to develop and introduce high-value-added products and services that contribute to carbon neutrality. Marketing is critical to quick and steady business expansion. We will achieve results by collaborating with the Corporate NV Creation, an organization specializing in marketing, to acquire multifaceted and comprehensive information on marketability. We have sent lots of personnel from our business group to the Corporate NV Creation, and we have great expectations for achieving innovation based on new concepts. At the same time, we are projecting that demand for products related to internal combustion engines will continue to grow through around 2025, and one of the important missions of our business group is to support earnings as a profit center by applying our global stable supply system. In addition to existing products, we will also focus on expanding our lineup of new high-performance products that meet stricter exhaust gas regulations in various countries, including high-performance gasoline particulate filters (GPFs), NOx sensors for gasoline engines, and electrically heated catalysts (EHCs).

Since the days of the former Ceramic Products Business Group, our business group has embraced a culture of open communication and superior interdepartmental cooperation. We will maintain those characteristics while embracing a positive attitude that encourages enjoying change s. With this philosophy, we will unite as a business group to increase motivation and move forward while evaluating both our current situation and the future trends.

Business operations

Chart depicting Environment Business Group sales as a percentage of total sales for the fiscal year ended March 2022. Environment Business Group sales accounted for 57.3% of all sales. This group primarily serves the automotive market. Auto manufacturers are among the main customers.

We manufacture and sell environmental protection and energy-saving products all over the world including Japan, Europe, the United States, and China. Our products include ceramic substrates for automotive catalytic converters, filter products for removing particulate matter (PM) (diesel vehicles: DPFs; gasoline vehicles: GPFs), and NOx sensors for measuring nitrogen oxide (NOx) concentrations in automobile exhaust.

PM filters (DPFs, GPFs) Reliably collects particulate matter (PM) with micropores. Removes up to 99% of PM. Silicon carbide (left side of photo), which has excellent heat resistance, is mainly used in passenger cars, while lightweight cordierite is used in larger vehicles.
In-vehicle high-precision NOx sensors Features a built-in element that applies the oxygen pump functions of zirconia. This product is chosen for installation in clean diesel vehicles around the world due to its excellent detection capabilities and durability.
HONEYCERAM, Ceramic Substrates for automotive catalytic converters Features a catalyst retained in a small honeycomb structure that can cover an area equivalent to the size of two soccer fields to detoxify harmful substances in automobile exhaust. Used by automobile manufacturers around the world.

Business overview and forecast

These charts depict net sales and operating income.

The fiscal year ended March 2022 resulted in increased sales and profits. Although the global automotive market was impacted by a semiconductor supply shortage, demand for products increased due to a recovery in sales of passenger cars and trucks, and the impact of stricter emission regulations.

For the fiscal year ending March 2023, we are forecasting net sales of 325 billion yen and operating income of 65 billion yen, representing increased revenues but profit that is almost the same year on year. In addition to an increase in demand for GPF s and large size substrates due to stricter emission regulations in China, we expect an increase in sales due to increased demand for other products driven by a recovery in passenger car sales. However, in terms of profits, negative impacts such as soaring raw material costs and increased labor costs due to inflation are expected to offset the effect of higher sales.


  • Material technology, product development, mass production technology, and the on-site Gemba capabilities to embody them
  • The ability to flexibly respond to laws and regulations in each country, regional characteristics, and demand fluctuations. Also, the capability to make proposals to automotive companies

Recognition of external environment

  • Stricter global emission regulations
  • Expansion of motorization
  • Expansion of global decarbonization initiatives

Recognition of external environment

  • Vehicle electrification
  • Growing geopolitical risks

Basic Strategies for the NGK Group Vision: Road to 2050

  • Fulfill role as a profit center to promote resource allocation towards expanding sales in CN and DS related markets
  • Use unique technology to develop new CN-related products and collaborate with the Corporate NV Creation on exploring new markets

Individual policies

  • Strengthen response to demand for exhaust purification systems for internal combustion engines, which is expected to increase until around 2025
  • Promote analysis of data obtained from manufacturing processes and improve productivity through automation and Manpower Saving. (Honeycomb product: Creation of next-generation honeycomb production system HPDX)
  • Apply DX to all processes of management, development, and production to achieve overall efficiency (Sensor products: Smart Operations)
  • Promote carbon-neutral initiatives in our manufacturing processes

Contribute to CN with advanced ceramic technology for both of internal combustion engines and other (various) fields

Development of items used in various devices, such as CO2 separation membranes, atmospheric CO2 adsorption modules, and others for industrial exhaust.

NGK develops, manufactures and sells environment friendly products utilizing the characteristics of ceramics such as separation, reaction, adsorption and thermal manipulation. Our PM removal filters have a membrane filter function boasting high separation performance to provide even higher functionality. We are also improving products for existing internal combustion engines.
Our goal is to apply the characteristics of ceramics in various fields such as CO2 recovery/separation, SOEC, and methanation, in order to contribute to a new era of carbon neutrality.
We have already begun exchanging specific information with customers on some development projects, and we will work to accelerate development.

Note: This interview was conducted in May 2022.