Globalization - In 1996 two executives from a Sioux Chief...

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In 1996 two executives from a Sioux Chief Manufacturing are on a plane destined to Kansas City. On the flight back from Japan, they are discussing the events that just took place that morning in a presentation to several Japanese plumbing distribution companies. Sioux Chief Manufacturing is a mid-size plumbing manufacturer in south Kansas City. It started in 1958 by Ed Ismert and is now owned and operated by Ed’s son, Joe. Joe, and another VP of Sioux Chief, Mike, discuss the possibilities of the distribution in Japan of their best selling product. Sioux Chief’s water hammer arrester division is the fastest growing division in the company. Utilizing the innovations and ideas of ‘small town, every day hard workers’ as Joe Ismert put it, Sioux Chief created products like the water hammer arrester that was rarely seen in several Asian countries. Water hammer arresters are a necessity in newly built homes, relieving the immense pressure felt in pipes when shutting the water on and off. Japan was a market in which Sioux Chief needed to do business. Prior to 1996, hardly any homes in Japan had water hammer arresters and Sioux Chief wanted to take advantage of that. Their presentation was successful and Japanese distribution centers started selling the neat devices almost faster than they could be made. Sioux Chief had a successful two years in Japan. Two years is all it took for Japanese companies to catch on to what Sioux Chief was trying to do. They improved on Sioux Chief’s design, while also manufacturing it cheaper. They had the advantage of expertise in local markets and faster manufacturing turnover. Finally, by the year 2000, Sioux Chief was no longer a major player in the Japanese arrester market. Their small size and proximity disparity with the Japanese and other foreign countries was too big of a margin to overcome. However, Sioux Chief was not defeated. It utilized its so-called ‘small town, every day hard
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Globalization - In 1996 two executives from a Sioux Chief...

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