Ryobi Holdings Company and Ryobi Group

Patrick, Hugh T.

I visited Ryobi Holdings Company in April 2013, and found one of the most
interesting and impressive companies I have ever seen. Owned by the Matsuda family, it was founded in 1910 as the Saidaiji Railroad Company. It is extraordinary in its articulation of its basic philosophy, its vision, its organizational structure and managerial style, its innovative search for new products and markets, and its outstanding and profitable growth performance. Its employment system combines merit and seniority. In this paper, I start by describing the organizational structure of this multifaceted company. With about 8,400 employees, Ryobi Holdings is the lead company of a group of small and medium enterprises in three broad categories: local transportation, consumer goods and services, and information technology. In total, there are 52 relatively autonomous small companies under the central leadership and decision making of the Matsudas. All of these companies operate under a philosophical spirit of “wholehearted sincerity,” with three guiding principles: adherence to high ethical and moral standards to achieve justice in solving problems through consideration
and sincerity; customer first; and happiness of the employees. One of Ryobi’s greatest strengths is its very active search for new market opportunities, in terms both of goods and services and at new locations; another is applying new technologies. Ryobi is an example of the continued importance of the Japanese entrepreneurial spirit.


More About This Work

Academic Units
Center on Japanese Economy and Business
Center on Japanese Economy and Business, Columbia University
Center on Japanese Economy and Business Occasional Papers, 64
Published Here
August 8, 2013