As regards profitability: Untrue. Vodafone K.K., despite the bad press, is
profitable. In 2003 it was in the top ten most profitable companies in
Japan, in 2004, again, quite profitable, and last years results haven't been
released, but I think it is clear that they were profitable. So, it is not a
simple matter to fire people, though of course Softbank has shown in
the past their willingness to take on the accepted status quo vis a vis
unwritten regulations (which the prohibition on profitable companies firing
people is--nothing in labour law says that they can't do it, the bureaucrats
have just chosen to interpret the law to mean that the only condition under
which it is acceptable, defined in the law as "business requirements", is
when the company is losing money).
There is actually quite a lot involved in running a mobile phone company,
and Softbank will need good people to do that. How and where they get the
people will determine the success or failure of the venture. There are a lot
of good people in Vodafone K.K., and I would be really disappointed to see
their skills and passion wasted.
As regards the brand, I can only say that I disagree. Yahoo!, as a brand, is
not not nearly as strong as a few years ago, and despite it's weak product
offering and other issues, Vodafone is a reasonably strong brand. There is
data to support this. And even in the best case scenario, any re-branding
undertaken immediately, would still be very late for mobile number
On 3/7/06, rumrails_at_yahoo.co.jp <rumrails_at_yahoo.co.jp> wrote:
> > I am going to be interested to see whether Softbank
> > chooses to keep the
> > Vodafone brand.
> They will rebrand so that they can cross market with their
> Yahoo services. The Vodaphone brand is not worth much in
> Japan but the Yahoo brand is. Timing is a pretty big issue
> though. As you point out, number portability complicates
> things. But is keeping the Vodaphone brand a bigger risk
> than changing it? Owning a Yahoo keitai could be cool but
> owning a Vodaphone phone is the opposite.
> > Similarly, Japanese labor practises make it
> > difficult to do mass firings, so
> > you will have a lot of the same people running
> > things.
> Not true. Businesses can down size anytime they want as
> long as they can show they are not profitable. Softbank
> can easily say that the company does not need the current
> number of employees and can cut staff. If Vodaphone was
> making lots of money, it would be difficult, but they are
> not, so mass firings are possible. Softbank do not like to
> pay people much if Yahoo BB is any indicator. I think
> Softbank will probably lay some people off and push down
> salaries over time.
> TSUKAME EIKOU! KAGAYAKE EGAO!
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Received on Wed Mar 8 01:54:51 2006