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North American Firms in East Asia

North American Firms in East Asia

Paul W. Beamish
A.E. Safarian
Volume: 5
Copyright Date: 1999
Pages: 196
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  • Book Info
    North American Firms in East Asia
    Book Description:

    Examines how foreign firms entering or operating in various Asian countries have responded to obstacles and opportunities in business.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-7777-7
    Subjects: Finance

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Preface
    (pp. vii-x)
    A.E. Safarian
  4. Challenge and response: North American firms in East Asia
    (pp. 1-16)

    Moving into foreign markets is risky because of the costs of learning and adapting to a different business and cultural setting. This book is about the successes and failures of eight North American firms as they attempted to locate, expand, or operate in various East Asian countries. Entry and operation in East Asian markets presents a challenge, as the low Canadian business presence suggests. Potential rewards are high but so are the accompanying risks. Previous volumes in this series have contributed information and analysis that may help to reduce some of the learning costs of entry and operation in East...

  5. Persistent adaptability as survival strategy for MNCs in emerging markets: The case of Nortel Networks in China
    (pp. 17-48)

    This chapter examines the experience of Nortel Networks in China. It traces the fortunes of the company over a 27-year period in the Chinese market, one of the largest and fastest growing telecoms markets in the world. The chapter is designed to provide a detailed look at an extremely challenging situation in the context of global strategy and the management of the multinational enterprise.

    The unfolding experience of Nortel in China illustrates the necessity of what I term “persistent adaptability” as a survival strategy for multinational corporations (MNCs) in emerging markets. Persistent adaptability recognizes two factors that have, to date,...

  6. Establishing a successful joint venture: Moore Business Forms in Japan
    (pp. 49-72)

    This chapter explores how Moore Business Forms of Toronto set up and maintained what came to be viewed as one of the largest and most successful joint ventures ever established by a foreign company in Japan (Beamish and Makino, 1992). The joint venture, between Moore and Toppan Printing of Japan, was known as Toppan Moore and lasted for 30 years, with annual sales eventually exceeding US$ 1.2 billion. Although a new CEO at Moore decided in 1995 to divest its stake in Toppan Moore (to the surprise of their partner), this nonetheless remains a model of successful joint venturing in...

  7. Employee development in emerging markets: lessons from Black & Decker Eastern Hemisphere
    (pp. 73-94)

    This chapter examines Black & Decker Eastern Hemisphereʼs attempts to import a North American employee appraisal and development system into its Eastern Hemisphere operations.¹ After successfully using the system in the United States, the new president of the Singapore-based Eastern Hemisphere overcame considerable opposition to introduce the system in Asia. The chapter explores the Black & Decker initiative in depth and then moves to a broader consideration of employee development in emerging markets. Developing and maintaining management “bench strength” has become a major challenge throughout much of Asia and Black & Deckerʼs efforts in the region provide several important insights. In conclusion, the...

  8. Regional expansion in Asia-Pacific: CIBC Wood Gundy to Malaysia
    (pp. 95-118)

    This chapter documents the decision process of a Canadian investment bank, CIBC Wood Gundy, as it undertook regional expansion in Asia-Pacific. CIBC Wood Gundy had existing Asian operations in Australia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, and Taiwan when, in late 1996, it was assessing whether to expand to Malaysia.

    Unlike some of the other chapters in this volume, which have dealt with the initial foreign subsidiary location decision, this chapter emphasizes the ongoing internationalization process that even experienced MNEs must work through. While this and the Palliser Furniture chapter both consider the market choice questions (albeit from different perspectives), the...

  9. Building effective business relationships in China: The case of Richmond Engineering
    (pp. 119-146)

    This chapter will discuss the efforts of a small entrepreneurial Canadian company, Richmond Engineering,¹ to build effective interfirm relationships in China and to negotiate a joint venture agreement with three Chinese organizations. A case discussion of Richmondʼs experience in China between 1984 and 1999 is followed by a review of the literature on the building of business relationships in China. The chapter ends with a discussion of the nature ofguanxi, the effects of Chinese and Canadian “psyches” on the negotiating process, and actions that could have more quickly produced a positive outcome.

    This section describes Richmond Engineeringʼs efforts to...

  10. “Interstitial opportunities” and the paradox of country risk: The case of Siam Canadian Foods, Inc.
    (pp. 147-168)

    Recent events in Asia have underscored the risk of doing business in developing and transitional economies. The essence of investing in these economies is decision making under uncertainty and incomplete information. Moreover, the level and nature of the risk involved is especially difficult to gauge because it can no longer be understood solely as a country-level phenomenon. The so-called contagion effect means that investors must grapple not only with the traditional risk variables within a focal country – regime stability, social unrest, e-rate volatility, contractual hazards, etc. – but also with the focal countryʼs position and vulnerability in the context...

  11. Communicating across cultures: The case of Midstream and Petro Vietnam
    (pp. 169-186)

    Describing an attempt by a consortium of Alberta companies to secure a natural gas processing plant in Vietnam, this chapter looks at communication across cultures and examines some of the influences that affect the success of the communication process and hence the success of business ventures. Many parallels can be drawn between the Canadian business practices in Vietnam and those displayed by Canadian businesses in other countries in Southeast Asia. O’Grady (1991) identified the key barriers to success in conducting business in Southeast Asia as a lack of commitment to investing overseas and poor market knowledge. Wright (1994) provided more...

  12. The foreign investment location decision: Transactions costs, product life cycles, and psychic distance
    (pp. 187-212)

    Palliser Furniture Ltd.¹ a large, successful, family-owned furniture manufacturer based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, had recently taken a decision to expand its foreign operations. While Palliserʼs business strategy, a product of North American trade liberalization, remained clearly centred on exports from Canada to the United States, management had begun to perceive risks and limitations to growth within the firmʼs historic product/market position. Since furniture producers in Canada are part of a mature industry, firms face great pressures for cost efficiency as a result of rising global competition. One way for a firm with the managerial and financial strength to deal with...

  13. About the authors
    (pp. 213-216)
  14. Institute for International Business
    (pp. 217-219)