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Sony - John Nathan

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Sony - the private life
John Nathan
UK Publication Date

Japanese corporations are notoriously secretive - John Nathan is the first person to be granted access to the principals at Sony for this brilliant and unique account of a hitherto closed world.In the wastelands of post-war Tokyo, two men, Akio Morita and Masaru Ibuka, formed the company that was to become one of the greatest corporations of the twentieth century. John Nathan tells the extraordinary story of how a small family business became a multi-national with a turnover of billions, whose products are sold throughout the world.One of Sony's greatest early achievements was the Trinitron colour television - by 1998 180 million had been sold world wide. Over the years Sony took recording into the digital age with the compact disc, transformed the way music is listened to with the Walkman, and redrew the computer games market with the Playstation, among many other successes.Sony matched its revolutionary technology with revolutionary methods of marketing - it was one of the first corporations to embrace globalization. So began a dramatic clash of two cultures, one rooted in Japanese native tradition and the other irreconcilably western. In relating the history of this clash John Nathan has also written a cultural history of Japan in the last fifty years.The disastrous purchase of Columbia Pictures took Sony into a world for which it was utterly unprepared, exacerbated by the cultural clash. This is the fullest analysis yet of this dramatic period, put together despite Sony's policy of silence about many of the details.

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John Nathan is the author of a biography of Mishima and translator of Oe and Mishima. He spent 1996 writing and directing a film about Sony and developed a candid relationship with Sony's current chairman and his successor.

Keyword Index
Industrial management - Japan.|Industrial marketing - Japan.
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