TOKYO — Onward Kashiyama named Shigeru Uemura, a member of its board of directors, as its president.

Takeshi Hirouchi, the current president, will assume the post of chairman and the current chairman, Akira Baba, will assume the post of honorary chairman while remaining a member of the board, the company said. 

“In the diversification of consumers’ definition of value and distribution channels, the fashion market is changing and its speed is becoming faster,” said the firm, adding it recognizes the need to remain aggressive and forward-thinking in order to maintain its growth.

Uemura, 51, started at Onward Kashiyama in 1976 after graduating with a degree in literature from Doshisha University in Kyoto. He has a long career in women’s wear at Onward Kashiyama.

Sales of the apparel group for the first half ended Aug. 31, 2004, rose 3.5 percent to 131.22 billion yen, or $1.27 billion at current exchange. Net profits for the period were 5.25 billion yen, or $51 million, and operating profits were up 17.3 percent to 10.74 billion yen, or $104.3 million. 

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