The company Lakewood Forest Products was able to position itself as the largest manufacturer of Chinese chopsticks with the least manpower required in the world after intensivemarketing effort in Japan. The company identifies a niche market that is conducive to the location (proximity to ports, customers, availability of raw materials and labor), low labor costs and highproductivity.
This analysis enabled them to realize that the sticks were not of good quality so the company developed methods of chopsticks qualified with automated machinery to ensure product quality(process of selecting and finished) and to reduce manufacturing costs, in addition to hire cheap labor. Another conclusion to the improvement of the product was to understand the market for chopsticks in theFar East: the daily consumption of chopsticks because of their culture, most of the meals eaten with chopsticks and it is necessary to satisfy Japanese customers with a disposable product withoutchemicals to avoid health problems.
After achieving these goals, Lakewood Forest Products was able to develop a capacity of up to seven million pairs of Chinese chopsticks a day, causing interest toimporters; was its first shipment of six containers with a cargo of 12 million pairs sent to Japan in 1987.
2. People Envolved
- Ian J.Ward, merchant exporter who managed to establish Lakewood ForestProducts. . He is an open and global minded entrepreneur due to the fact he was able to figure out his company troubles and also how to solve it.
- Rudy Perpich, governor of Hibbing, Minnesota andpromoter of the businesses in the region.
3. Business Envolved
- Lakewood Forest Products, leading exporter of Chinese chopsticks.
- Bedas Canadian Ltd., Ward old company that disappeared because theinternational wood market had collapsed.
4. Main Problem
The decline and outdated technology in the production of Chinese chopsticks and the lack of natural resources in the Far East forced him...