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Shimadzu Corp (7701) SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / MBA Resources

Introduction to SWOT Analysis

SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix for Shimadzu Corp (Japan)


Based on various researches at Oak Spring University , Shimadzu Corp is operating in a macro-environment that has been destablized by – increasing transportation and logistics costs, increasing commodity prices, digital marketing is dominated by two big players Facebook and Google, wage bills are increasing, banking and financial system is disrupted by Bitcoin and other crypto currencies, increasing household debt because of falling income levels, central banks are concerned over increasing inflation, there is backlash against globalization, geopolitical disruptions, etc



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Introduction to SWOT Analysis of Shimadzu Corp


SWOT stands for an organization’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats . At Oak Spring University, we believe that Shimadzu Corp can use SWOT analysis as a strategic management tool to assess the current internal strengths and weaknesses of the Shimadzu Corp, and to figure out the opportunities and threats in the macro environment – technological, environmental, political, economic, social, demographic, etc in which Shimadzu Corp operates in.

According to Harvard Business Review, 75% of the managers use SWOT analysis for various purposes such as – evaluating current scenario, strategic planning, new venture feasibility, personal growth goals, new market entry, Go To market strategies, portfolio management and strategic trade-off assessment, organizational restructuring, etc.




SWOT Objectives / Importance of SWOT Analysis and SWOT Matrix


SWOT analysis of Shimadzu Corp can be done for the following purposes –
1. Strategic planning of Shimadzu Corp
2. Improving business portfolio management of Shimadzu Corp
3. Assessing feasibility of the new initiative in Japan
4. Making a Electronic Instr. & Controls sector specific business decision
5. Set goals for the organization
6. Organizational restructuring of Shimadzu Corp




Strengths of Shimadzu Corp | Internal Strategic Factors
What are Strengths in SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis

The strengths of Shimadzu Corp are -

Analytics focus

– Shimadzu Corp is putting a lot of focus on utilizing the power of analytics in business decision making. This has put it among the leading players in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry. The technology infrastructure of Japan is also helping it to harness the power of analytics for – marketing optimization, demand forecasting, customer relationship management, inventory management, information sharing across the value chain etc.

Organizational Resilience of Shimadzu Corp

– The covid-19 pandemic has put organizational resilience at the centre of everthing Shimadzu Corp does. Organizational resilience comprises - Financial Resilience, Operational Resilience, Technological Resilience, Organizational Resilience, Business Model Resilience, and Reputation Resilience.

Superior customer experience

– The customer experience strategy of Shimadzu Corp in Electronic Instr. & Controls industry is based on four key concepts – personalization, simplification of complex needs, prompt response, and continuous engagement.

Digital Transformation in Electronic Instr. & Controls industry

- digital transformation varies from industry to industry. For Shimadzu Corp digital transformation journey comprises differing goals based on market maturity, customer technology acceptance, and organizational culture. Shimadzu Corp has successfully integrated the four key components of digital transformation – digital integration in processes, digital integration in marketing and customer relationship management, digital integration into the value chain, and using technology to explore new products and market opportunities.

Operational resilience

– The operational resilience strategy of Shimadzu Corp comprises – understanding the underlying the factors in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry, building diversified operations across different geographies so that disruption in one part of the world doesn’t impact the overall performance of the firm, and integrating the various business operations and processes through its digital transformation drive.

Training and development

– Shimadzu Corp has one of the best training and development program in Technology industry. The effectiveness of the training programs can be measured in – employees retention, in-house promotion, loyalty, new venture initiation, lack of conflict, and high level of both employees and customer engagement.

Diverse revenue streams

– Shimadzu Corp is present in almost all the verticals within the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry. This has provided Shimadzu Corp a diverse revenue stream that has helped it to survive disruptions such as global pandemic in Covid-19, financial disruption of 2008, and supply chain disruption of 2021.

Successful track record of launching new products

– Shimadzu Corp has launched numerous new products in last few years, keeping in mind evolving customer preferences and competitive pressures. Shimadzu Corp has effective processes in place that helps in exploring new product needs, doing quick pilot testing, and then launching the products quickly using its extensive distribution network.

Ability to lead change in Electronic Instr. & Controls

– Shimadzu Corp is one of the leading players in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry in Japan. Over the years it has not only transformed the business landscape in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry in Japan but also across the existing markets. The ability to lead change has enabled Shimadzu Corp in – penetrating new markets, reaching out to new customers, and providing different value propositions to different customers in the international markets.

High switching costs

– The high switching costs that Shimadzu Corp has built up over years in its products and services combo offer has resulted in high retention of customers, lower marketing costs, and greater ability of the firm to focus on its customers.

Learning organization

- Shimadzu Corp is a learning organization. It has inculcated three key characters of learning organization in its processes and operations – exploration, creativity, and expansiveness. The work place at Shimadzu Corp is open place that encourages instructiveness, ideation, open minded discussions, and creativity. Employees and leaders at Shimadzu Corp emphasize – knowledge, initiative, and innovation.

Highly skilled collaborators

– Shimadzu Corp has highly efficient outsourcing and offshoring strategy. It has resulted in greater operational flexibility and bringing down the costs in highly price sensitive Electronic Instr. & Controls industry. Secondly the value chain collaborators of Shimadzu Corp have helped the firm to develop new products and bring them quickly to the marketplace.






Weaknesses of Shimadzu Corp | Internal Strategic Factors
What are Weaknesses in SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis

The weaknesses of Shimadzu Corp are -

High operating costs

– Compare to the competitors, Shimadzu Corp has high operating costs in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry. This can be harder to sustain given the new emerging competition from nimble players who are using technology to attract Shimadzu Corp lucrative customers.

High cash cycle compare to competitors

Shimadzu Corp has a high cash cycle compare to other players in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry. It needs to shorten the cash cycle by 12% to be more competitive in the marketplace, reduce inventory costs, and be more profitable.

Capital Spending Reduction

– Even during the low interest decade, Shimadzu Corp has not been able to do capital spending to the tune of the competition. This has resulted into fewer innovations and company facing stiff competition from both existing competitors and new entrants who are disrupting the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry using digital technology.

High dependence on Shimadzu Corp ‘s star products

– The top 2 products and services of Shimadzu Corp still accounts for major business revenue. This dependence on star products in Electronic Instr. & Controls industry has resulted into insufficient focus on developing new products, even though Shimadzu Corp has relatively successful track record of launching new products.

Skills based hiring in Electronic Instr. & Controls industry

– The stress on hiring functional specialists at Shimadzu Corp has created an environment where the organization is dominated by functional specialists rather than management generalist. This has resulted into product oriented approach rather than marketing oriented approach or consumers oriented approach.

Interest costs

– Compare to the competition, Shimadzu Corp has borrowed money from the capital market at higher rates. It needs to restructure the interest payment and costs so that it can compete better and improve profitability.

Slow to strategic competitive environment developments

– As Shimadzu Corp is one of the leading players in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry, it takes time to assess the upcoming competitions. This has led to missing out on atleast 2-3 big opportunities in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry in last five years.

Workers concerns about automation

– As automation is fast increasing in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry, Shimadzu Corp needs to come up with a strategy to reduce the workers concern regarding automation. Without a clear strategy, it could lead to disruption and uncertainty within the organization.

Increasing silos among functional specialists

– The organizational structure of Shimadzu Corp is dominated by functional specialists. It is not different from other players in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry, but Shimadzu Corp needs to de-silo the office environment to harness the true potential of its workforce. Secondly the de-silo will also help Shimadzu Corp to focus more on services in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry rather than just following the product oriented approach.

Ability to respond to the competition

– As the decision making is very deliberative at Shimadzu Corp, in the dynamic environment of Electronic Instr. & Controls industry it has struggled to respond to the nimble upstart competition. Shimadzu Corp has reasonably good record with similar level competitors but it has struggled with new entrants taking away niches of its business.

Compensation and incentives

– The revenue per employee of Shimadzu Corp is just above the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry average. It needs to redesign the compensation structure and incentives to increase the revenue per employees. Some of the steps that it can take are – hiring more specialists on project basis, etc.




Shimadzu Corp Opportunities | External Strategic Factors
What are Opportunities in the SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis


The opportunities of Shimadzu Corp are -

Learning at scale

– Online learning technologies has now opened space for Shimadzu Corp to conduct training and development for its employees across the world. This will result in not only reducing the cost of training but also help employees in different part of the world to integrate with the headquarter work culture, ethos, and standards.

Reconfiguring business model

– The expansion of digital payment system, the bringing down of international transactions costs using Bitcoin and other blockchain based currencies, etc can help Shimadzu Corp to reconfigure its entire business model. For example it can used blockchain based technologies to reduce piracy of its products in the big markets such as China. Secondly it can use the popularity of e-commerce in various developing markets to build a Direct to Customer business model rather than the current Channel Heavy distribution network.

Use of Bitcoin and other crypto currencies for transactions in Electronic Instr. & Controls industry

– The popularity of Bitcoin and other crypto currencies as asset class and medium of transaction has opened new opportunities for Shimadzu Corp in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry. Now Shimadzu Corp can target international markets with far fewer capital restrictions requirements than the existing system.

Building a culture of innovation

– managers at Shimadzu Corp can make experimentation a productive activity and build a culture of innovation using approaches such as – mining transaction data, A/B testing of websites and selling platforms, engaging potential customers over various needs, and building on small ideas in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry.

Developing new processes and practices

– Shimadzu Corp can develop new processes and procedures in Electronic Instr. & Controls industry using technology such as automation using artificial intelligence, real time transportation and products tracking, 3D modeling for concept development and new products pilot testing etc.

Better consumer reach

– The expansion of the 5G network will help Shimadzu Corp to increase its market reach. Shimadzu Corp will be able to reach out to new customers. Secondly 5G will also provide technology framework to build new tools and products that can help more immersive consumer experience and faster consumer journey.

Low interest rates

– Even though inflation is raising its head in most developed economies, Shimadzu Corp can still utilize the low interest rates to borrow money for capital investment. Secondly it can also use the increase of government spending in infrastructure projects to get new business.

Increase in government spending

– As the United States and other governments are increasing social spending and infrastructure spending to build economies post Covid-19, Shimadzu Corp can use these opportunities to build new business models that can help the communities that Shimadzu Corp operates in. Secondly it can use opportunities from government spending in Electronic Instr. & Controls sector.

Lowering marketing communication costs

– 5G expansion will open new opportunities for Shimadzu Corp in the field of marketing communication. It will bring down the cost of doing business, provide technology platform to build new products in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry, and it will provide faster access to the consumers.

Changes in consumer behavior post Covid-19

– consumer behavior has changed in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry because of Covid-19 restrictions. Some of this behavior will stay once things get back to normal. Shimadzu Corp can take advantage of these changes in consumer behavior to build a far more efficient business model. For example consumer regular ordering of products can reduce both last mile delivery costs and market penetration costs. Shimadzu Corp can further use this consumer data to build better customer loyalty, provide better products and service collection, and improve the value proposition in inflationary times.

Redefining models of collaboration and team work

– As explained in the weaknesses section, Shimadzu Corp is facing challenges because of the dominance of functional experts in the organization. Shimadzu Corp can utilize new technology in the field of Electronic Instr. & Controls industry to build more coordinated teams and streamline operations and communications using tools such as CAD, Zoom, etc.

Creating value in data economy

– The success of analytics program of Shimadzu Corp has opened avenues for new revenue streams for the organization in Electronic Instr. & Controls industry. This can help Shimadzu Corp to build a more holistic ecosystem for Shimadzu Corp products in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry by providing – data insight services, data privacy related products, data based consulting services, etc.

Buying journey improvements

– Shimadzu Corp can improve the customer journey of consumers in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry by using analytics and artificial intelligence. It can provide automated chats to help consumers solve their own problems, provide online suggestions to get maximum out of the products and services, and help consumers to build a community where they can interact with each other to develop new features and uses.




Threats Shimadzu Corp External Strategic Factors
What are Threats in the SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis


The threats of Shimadzu Corp are -

Easy access to finance

– Easy access to finance in Electronic Instr. & Controls industry will also reduce the barriers to entry in the industry, thus putting downward pressure on the prices because of increasing competition. Shimadzu Corp can utilize it by borrowing at lower rates and invest it into research and development, capital expenditure to fortify its core competitive advantage.

Technology acceleration in Forth Industrial Revolution

– Shimadzu Corp has witnessed rapid integration of technology during Covid-19 in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry. As one of the leading players in the industry, Shimadzu Corp needs to keep up with the evolution of technology in the Electronic Instr. & Controls sector. According to Mckinsey study top managers believe that the adoption of technology in operations, communications is 20-25 times faster than what they planned in the beginning of 2019.

Trade war between China and United States

– The trade war between two of the biggest economies can hugely impact the opportunities for Shimadzu Corp in Electronic Instr. & Controls industry. The Electronic Instr. & Controls industry is already at various protected from local competition in China, with the rise of trade war the protection levels may go up. This presents a clear threat of current business model in Chinese market.

High level of anxiety and lack of motivation

– the Great Resignation in United States is the sign of broader dissatisfaction among the workforce in United States. Shimadzu Corp needs to understand the core reasons impacting the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry. This will help it in building a better workplace.

Technology disruption because of hacks, piracy etc

– The colonial pipeline illustrated, how vulnerable modern organization are to international hackers, miscreants, and disruptors. The cyber security interruption, data leaks, etc can seriously jeopardize the future growth of the organization.

Stagnating economy with rate increase

– Shimadzu Corp can face lack of demand in the market place because of Fed actions to reduce inflation. This can lead to sluggish growth in the economy, lower demands, lower investments, higher borrowing costs, and consolidation in the Electronic Instr. & Controls industry.

Capital market disruption

– During the Covid-19, Dow Jones has touched record high. The valuations of a number of companies are way beyond their existing business model potential. This can lead to capital market correction which can put a number of suppliers, collaborators, value chain partners in great financial difficulty. It will directly impact the business of Shimadzu Corp.

Consumer confidence and its impact on Shimadzu Corp demand

– There is a high probability of declining consumer confidence, given – high inflammation rate, rise of gig economy, lower job stability, increasing cost of living, higher interest rates, and aging demography. All the factors contribute to people saving higher rate of their income, resulting in lower consumer demand in Electronic Instr. & Controls industry and other sectors.

Instability in the European markets

– European Union markets are facing three big challenges post Covid – expanded balance sheets, Brexit related business disruption, and aggressive Russia looking to distract the existing security mechanism. Shimadzu Corp will face different problems in different parts of Europe. For example it will face inflationary pressures in UK, France, and Germany, balance sheet expansion and demand challenges in Southern European countries, and geopolitical instability in the Eastern Europe.

Learning curve for new practices

– As the technology based on artificial intelligence and machine learning platform is getting complex, Shimadzu Corp may face longer learning curve for training and development of existing employees. This can open space for more nimble competitors in the field of Electronic Instr. & Controls sector.

Barriers of entry lowering

– As technology is more democratized, the barriers to entry to Electronic Instr. & Controls industry are lowering. It can presents Shimadzu Corp with greater competitive threats in the near to medium future. Secondly it will also put downward pressure on pricing throughout the Electronic Instr. & Controls sector.

Increasing international competition and downward pressure on margins

– Apart from technology driven competitive advantage dilution, Shimadzu Corp can face downward pressure on margins from increasing competition from international players. The international players have stable revenue in their home market and can use those resources to penetrate Shimadzu Corp prominent markets.

Increasing wage structure of Shimadzu Corp

– Post Covid-19 there is a sharp increase in the wages especially in the jobs that require interaction with people. The increasing wages can put downward pressure on the margins of Shimadzu Corp.




Weighted SWOT Analysis of Shimadzu Corp Template, Example


Not all factors mentioned under the Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats quadrants in the SWOT Analysis are equal. Managers at Shimadzu Corp needs to zero down on the relative importance of each factor mentioned in the Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats quadrants. We can provide the relative importance to each factor by assigning relative weights. Weighted SWOT analysis process is a three stage process –

First stage for doing weighted SWOT analysis of Shimadzu Corp is to rank the strengths and weaknesses of the organization. This will help you to assess the most important strengths and weaknesses of the firm and which one of the strengths and weaknesses mentioned in the initial lists are marginal and can be left out.

Second stage for conducting weighted SWOT analysis of Shimadzu Corp is to give probabilities to the external strategic factors thus better understanding the opportunities and threats arising out of macro environment changes and developments.

Third stage of constructing weighted SWOT analysis of Shimadzu Corp to provide strategic recommendations includes – joining likelihood of external strategic factors such as opportunities and threats to the internal strategic factors – strengths and weaknesses. You should start with external factors as they will provide the direction of the overall industry. Secondly by joining probabilities with internal strategic factors can help the company not only strategic fit but also the most probably strategic trade-off that Shimadzu Corp needs to make to build a sustainable competitive advantage.



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