What was the critical catalyst that led kodak to start taking japanese market seriously?


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Lynn Blakeman Profile
Lynn Blakeman answered

Although Kodak started to sell photographic equipment in Japan from 1889, and was highly respected in the Japanese market, Kodak did not see Japan as being majorly important to them.

Therefore, in the 1930s, after world war II, many US businesses were persuaded to leave Japan to allow local industry to recover following the disaster of war. Kodak was amongst the companies to leave.

There were some dealings with Japan, but they saw the market hold slip to a disappointing 5%, with Fuji taking a 70% control. This was largely due to Kodak being priced out of the market through barriers put in place by the Japanese.

However, in the 1980's, Fuji decided to try to gain dominance in the US and European market. This was the turning point for Kodak as the company decided to fight fire with fire, ploughing millions of dollars into advertising and sponsorship in Japan.

There were huge billboards erected costing a million dollars each, and Kodak sponsored sumo wrestling and other sporting events, including sponsoring the Japanese team in the Olympic games in Seoul.

In turn, Fuji was forced to pull many of its executives back to Japan to defend the company name there, thus leaving the European and US markets available to Kodak once more.

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