Distribution and Marketing
In the study of the Japanese distribution system, three areas are examined. “Structural alteration in Japanese retailing” is treated particularly with a view to the sustained changes in the 1990s. Developments are strongly influenced by factors in the surrounding political-regulatory area (“Japanese internal trade policy”). Central to the study are manufacturer – retailer relationships. Despite the appearance of large retail businesses, the Japanese consumer goods industry was long successful in dominating sales channels. Sales problems in industry and the greater strength of retailers resulting from deregulation are now leading to a redefinition of the relationship between manufacturers and retailers in the Japanese market. In working towards the development of a theoretical framework for the analysis of these changes, we examine fundamental questions of industry- and retail marketing.
Recent statistics indicate the increasing importance of the service sector in the Japanese economy. The basis for this, on the one hand, restructuring in the processing industry and, on the other, new entrepreneurial initiatives in the service sector itself. In treating this topic, we should address not only labour market policy aspects but also questions of service management and the division of labour between manufacturing, services, and consumers.