“Apple Inc. is striking gold in an unlikely place: Japan,” Daisuke Wakabayashi and Mayumi Negishi report for The Wall Street Journal.
“In the past two years, Japan has emerged as Apple’s fastest-growing region, far outpacing its home market and the booming economies of Greater China and the rest of Asia,” Wakabayashi and Negishi report. “Japan is also home to Apple’s biggest profit margins, and the only one of Apple’s five regions where operating profit grew in the past fiscal year. That is surprising because Japan isn’t most companies’ idea of a growth market. It has labored through two decades of economic malaise, and is saddled with a shrinking, aging population. Moreover, domestic firms that pride themselves on consumer electronics have kept foreign competitors at bay for decades.”
“The iPhone has propelled Apple’s success in Japan, supported by heavy marketing and rich subsidies from telephone companies. The iPhone’s cachet taps Japan’s fervor for brand-name goods, similar to how Japanese shoppers once flocked to Louis Vuitton bags and Burberry scarves,” Wakabayashi and Negishi report. “One unique factor in Japan is the relatively small presence of Samsung Electronics Co., the world’s largest smartphone maker. Samsung ranks fourth in Japan behind Apple, Sony and Sharp Corp., in part because of a Japanese consumer bias that works against many Korean brands.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Maybe the Japanese have taste, not bias? Perhaps they simply reject derivative, poorly-built junk? Maybe they just refuse to reward thieves?