Case | HBS Case Collection | April 2010

Globalization at Komatsu

by Michael Y. Yoshino

Abstract

The case captures the challenges Komatsu, the second largest manufacturer of the earth moving equipment faced during the past five decades as it sought to globalize its operations. By 2007, it had become the second largest manufacturer of the earth moving equipment with more than 80% of its sales coming from outside of Japan. It has built a network of plants, distributors and service centers around the world. Senior management is convinced that a major reason for its success is its culture, recently articulated as the Komatsu Way. The central issue in the case is how to transmit and embed it to its far flung operations throughout the world.

Keywords: Multinational Firms and Management; Distribution Channels; Production; Organizational Culture; Networks; Partners and Partnerships; Manufacturing Industry; Japan;

Citation:

Yoshino, Michael Y. "Globalization at Komatsu." Harvard Business School Case 910-415, April 2010.