Business Case Study: How Sushi Went Global & Google in Asia - Seeking Success
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  • 1. Group Class Participation Project Group #8 - Arcadians Inc. [Chandra Vijay Dubey, Jitin Sharma, Kamal Krishan, Kamran Mahboob, Mohammad Wamique Siddiqui, Sher Hassan Mazari, Subhasis Pal, & Surinder Singh] Instructor: Cesar Polvorosa GBMP 528 – 01
  • 2. GBMP 528 – 01 Group #8 - Arcadians Inc. Business Case #1: How Sushi Went Global 1. Summary The article "How Sushi Went Global" by Theodore C. Bestor published in Foreign Affairs magazine November/December 2000 is all about extent of sushi worldwide. The author opens his article by painting a scene that represents the globalization of bluefin tuna and how it was traded. The author states that October 10 was the day when tuna first appeared in Japanese literature in the form of imperial court poetry-Man’yoshu as one of the gigantic classics of Japanese literature. Now October 10 is a national holiday in Japan signifying close connections among Japanese culture, healthy food for dynamic lives, and holiday for family meal. Despite of the cultural influence flowing from west to east, sushi made its mark in North America. North Americans tend to think of cultural influence as flowing from West to East, Japanese culture and materials have undoubtedly permeated the cultural whims of many, if not most, North American citizens. In 1929, the Ladies' Home Journal introduced Japanese cooking to North American women and by 1960; articles on sushi created a niche in lifestyle magazines like Holiday and Sunset. Japan's started to emerge on the global economic as the business destination and popularity of sushi. Such a permeation occurred after the 1970s, when Americans, according to author, "rejected red-meat American fare in favor of healthy cuisine like rice, fish, and vegetables. The appeal of the high-concept aesthetics of Japanese design also helped to prepare the world for a sushi fad". Indeed, sushi seems to be offered at every popular restaurant in an attempt to lure in customers and, consequently, profit. Sushi started having its influence not only throughout North America but Europe, and Latin America as well. Sushi’s global popularity transformed the international role of the Japanese fishing industry. Group Class Participation Project Page: 1/7
  • 3. GBMP 528 – 01 Group #8 - Arcadians Inc. 2. How did sushi become Global? Due to advances in technology and increasing efficiency within intercontinental trade in respect to food, sushi has become a dietary essential in most parts of the Western world. This transition has had a dramatic effect on the fishing industries in positive manner and demand for fish products have increased significantly. In fact, the attainment of sushi has come to influence how fishing is done. It rose as a status symbol and its overwhelming demand shifted America's fishing focus towards tuna; which was barely suitable for cat food a few decades ago. Outward reach of Japanese markets, consumer demand for high quality seafood, and growth of foreign fishing industries created a huge demand for sushi worldwide. It has also elevated the Japanese culture. Joint ventures between Japanese trading firms and large scale Spanish fishing companies have set up farms using the latest Japanese fishing technology. The waters and the workers are Spanish, but almost everything else is part of a global flow of techniques and capital; financing from major Japanese trading companies; Japanese vessels to tend the nets; aqua-cultural techniques developed in Australia; vitamin supplements from European pharmaceutical giants packed into frozen herring from Holland to be heaved over the gunwales for the tuna; plus computer models of feeding schedules, weight gains, and target market prices developed by Japanese technicians and scientists. 3. What are the global aspects of sushi? Sushi has become a linkage among global food chains and Japanese culture. Fishes in the form of sushi has linked Japan to the rest of the world. Sushi, because of its usage of fresh ingredients began to appeal to Americans, as a thin ideal of beauty inspired a diet craze, and sushi met every standard for being both healthful and light. Above all, sushi was seen as a diet food without social cost. In large part due to these changing perceptions, sushi restaurants began opening up in greater Group Class Participation Project Page: 2/7
  • 4. GBMP 528 – 01 Group #8 - Arcadians Inc. numbers around North America. From its initial appeal to Japanese executives, who by then were coming to the America in lesser numbers, sushi had begun to attract affluent, diet conscious uppermiddle class Americans. Even though international environmental campaigns have forced countries like Japan to scale back their distant water fleets and thus made Japan’s turning to foreign suppliers unavoidable, Japanese cultural control of sushi remains, according to author, unquestioned. In terms of contact, author refers to Spanish waters to prove his point; while the workers in Spanish waters are mostly Spanish, almost every other aspect of such fishing is part of a global flow of techniques and capital: aquacultural techniques are developed in Australia and vitamin supplements are sent from European pharmaceutical giants. 4. What are the cultural aspects of the sushi industry? The brand equity of sushi as Japanese cultural property adds to the status of both the country and the cuisine. Sushi remains firmly linked in the minds of Japanese and foreigners. Japan's ability to transform tuna from trash into treasure around the world is simply national symbolism. The deep red of tuna served as sushi contrasts with white rice, evoking the red and white of the Japanese national flag. Some believe that red and white is an auspicious color combination in Japanese ritual life. While other think the cultural prize is a fighting spirit, pure machismo. For some fishers, the meaning of tuna is the equation of tuna with Japanese identity of being simple. But the ability of fishers today to visualize Japanese culture and the place of tuna within its demanding culinary tradition is constantly shaped and reshaped by the flow of cultural images that now travel around the globe in all directions simultaneously, bumping into each other everywhere. In the newly rewired circuitry of global cultural and economic affairs, Japan is the core, and the Atlantic seaboard. Group Class Participation Project Page: 3/7
  • 5. GBMP 528 – 01 Group #8 - Arcadians Inc. 5. Does sushi consumption remain as a Japanese practice? Why or why not? It is apparent that sushi is becoming increasingly sophisticated both overseas and in Japan, as it is adapting to new environments and tastes by chefs who demonstrate multiple culinary influences and agendas. Though japan introduced sushi to America, now Sushi-Roll (American sushi) has become part of diet to Japan in a new appearance. This reverse movement, where products and ideas move from the “origin” to other destinations, and then return, transformed, to the “origin” replete with added meanings, illustrates a complex dimension of globalization that has rarely been addressed. Interestingly, Japanese consumers seem to have embraced the new charm of this American sushi. Perhaps this reflects the growing confidence of Japanese consumers to ironically and playfully consume the other’s version of something of their own product, a sign perhaps that globalization processes may be becoming increasingly sophisticated over time. Group Class Participation Project Page: 4/7
  • 6. GBMP 528 – 01 Group #8 - Arcadians Inc. Business Case #2: Google in Asia - Seeking Success Summary Google is a famous search engine in the whole world, however in South Korea it failed to mark its position. People in South Korea, who want to look something up on the internet, will prefer to use Naver than Google. Naver, a nine-year-old (now thirteen-year-old) search engine is wildly popular, accounting for 76% of internet searches compared to other search engines. Naver owes its popularity, in part; to the fact that it is not just a search engine but it is also a portal, drawing together news, e-mail, discussion groups, stock market information, videos, restaurant reviews and so on. Some says that Naver is also dominant; too dominant, because it caters to the interests of South Koreans. 2. Why is Naver more popular than Google in South Korea? Initially if we searched something on Google, the result were a lot of irrelevant pages and links in the organic listings. However in South Korea, Naver returned more relevant pages and links displaying proper information. Naver pioneered the idea of presenting search results from several categories on the same page, which was later adopted by Google. Another popular feature in Naver is its "Knowledge Search" service which was launched in 2002. It enables people to ask questions, and the answers are served up from a database created by other users. The answers can be easily edited just like Wikipedia, for the benefit of others who ask the same question in future and those who submit the question or answer are rewarded by points system. Naver’s hold in South Korea is so strong that Google and Yahoo have decided to combine some of their services in order to better services against the local giant. Group Class Participation Project Page: 5/7
  • 7. GBMP 528 – 01 Group #8 - Arcadians Inc. 3. Relevance of understanding cultures in the success of internet businesses like Naver Culture can be defined as: a person's collective experience as a society, and its impact on reaction and decision-making is relative to everyday facts and circumstances. Culture plays a significant role in success of any business. For example: computer users prefer user-interfaces that have been adapted to their cultural background in regards to the kind of navigational support, the level hierarchy in information presentation, and this is because of work efficiency, and user satisfaction. South Korea has long been one of the most advanced web markets, with high internet penetration and fast connectivity. Naver’s knowledge iN provides with new ways in the history of Korea’s search market. It created a way to access documented knowledge that was locked inside the human mind. This service is benchmark for the Korean culture. It can be stated that business can only survive if the services or products are according to the locality/area and taste. Preferences must be considered for carrying on business successfully. 4. Is there an application to other businesses in the success of Naver? Yes, there is an application of culture to some extent. Designing the product or the service application process according to the cultural preferences of the geographic region has a major effect on the consumers and success of product. One important thing to bear on mind is that Naver's search engine is built around the Korean language, which helps Naver deliver more relevant results than Google. Naver is picky about what users are getting, while Google seems to present with search results that could be useless. Group Class Participation Project Page: 6/7
  • 8. GBMP 528 – 01 Group #8 - Arcadians Inc. References Alesia. (2012, May 14). Google Vs. Naver: Why Can’t Google Dominate Search in Korea? Retrieved from Link-Assistant.Com Blog: http://www.link-assistant.com/blog/google-vsnaver-why-cant-google-dominate-search-in-korea/#ixzz2Y25QI6dJ Bestor (2005) How Sushi Went Global. (2012, Feb 18). Retrieved from Geneseo College: https://wiki.geneseo.edu/display/food/Bestor+%282005%29+How+Sushi+Went+Global Bestor, T. C. (2000, Nov/Dec). How Sushi Went Global. Retrieved from Washington State University: http://public.wsu.edu/~appleton/PS314/How%20Sushi%20Went%20Global.pdf Birch, G. (2011, August 17). Korean Search Engine Naver Will Expand Internationally. Retrieved from multilingual-search | Webcertain: http://blog.webcertain.com/koreansearch-engine-naver-will-expand-internationally/17/08/2011/ Choi, J. (2012, Oct 5). Why Google can’t be #1 in the Korean market. Retrieved from The Online Economy: Strategy and Entrepreneurship: http://www.onlineeconomy.org/whygoogle-can%E2%80%99t-be-1-in-the-korean-market Google in Asia - Seeking success. (2009, Feb 26). Retrieved from The Economist: http://www.economist.com/node/13185891 Google Logo. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://superbwebsitebuilders.com/wpcontent/uploads/2013/06/Google.jpg Sushi Image. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2jc7ksZ7Uw/TesEaDxs9yI/AAAAAAAAAGc/bO8oqHJhP0Y/s1600/day69-1+sushi.jpg Group Class Participation Project Page: 7/7