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Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical (4541) SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / MBA Resources

Introduction to SWOT Analysis

SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix for Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical (Japan)


Based on various researches at Oak Spring University , Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical is operating in a macro-environment that has been destablized by – increasing inequality as vast percentage of new income is going to the top 1%, increasing transportation and logistics costs, customer relationship management is fast transforming because of increasing concerns over data privacy, supply chains are disrupted by pandemic , competitive advantages are harder to sustain because of technology dispersion, digital marketing is dominated by two big players Facebook and Google, challanges to central banks by blockchain based private currencies, central banks are concerned over increasing inflation, talent flight as more people leaving formal jobs, etc



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Introduction to SWOT Analysis of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical


SWOT stands for an organization’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats . At Oak Spring University, we believe that Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical can use SWOT analysis as a strategic management tool to assess the current internal strengths and weaknesses of the Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical, and to figure out the opportunities and threats in the macro environment – technological, environmental, political, economic, social, demographic, etc in which Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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 Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical can be done for the following purposes –
1. Strategic planning of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical
2. Improving business portfolio management of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical
3. Assessing feasibility of the new initiative in Japan
4. Making a Biotechnology & Drugs sector specific business decision
5. Set goals for the organization
6. Organizational restructuring of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical




Strengths of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical | Internal Strategic Factors
What are Strengths in SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis

The strengths of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical are -

High brand equity

– Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical has strong brand awareness and brand recognition among both - the exiting customers and potential new customers. Strong brand equity has enabled Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical to keep acquiring new customers and building profitable relationship with both the new and loyal customers.

Effective Research and Development (R&D)

– Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical has innovation driven culture where significant part of the revenues are spent on the research and development activities. This has resulted in – Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical staying ahead in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry in terms of – new product launches, superior customer experience, highly competitive pricing strategies, and great returns to the shareholders.

Low bargaining power of suppliers

– Suppliers of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical in the Healthcare sector have low bargaining power. Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical has further diversified its suppliers portfolio by building a robust supply chain across various countries. This helps Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical to manage not only supply disruptions but also source products at highly competitive prices.

Ability to lead change in Biotechnology & Drugs

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

Ability to recruit top talent

– Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical is one of the leading players in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry in Japan. It is in a position to attract the best talent available in Japan. The firm has a robust talent identification program that helps in identifying the brightest.

High switching costs

– The high switching costs that Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.

Training and development

– Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical has one of the best training and development program in Healthcare 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.

Strong track record of project management in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry

– Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical is known for sticking to its project targets. This enables the firm to manage – time, project costs, and have sustainable margins on the projects.

Superior customer experience

– The customer experience strategy of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical in Biotechnology & Drugs industry is based on four key concepts – personalization, simplification of complex needs, prompt response, and continuous engagement.

Learning organization

- Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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 Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical is open place that encourages instructiveness, ideation, open minded discussions, and creativity. Employees and leaders at Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical emphasize – knowledge, initiative, and innovation.

Digital Transformation in Biotechnology & Drugs industry

- digital transformation varies from industry to industry. For Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical digital transformation journey comprises differing goals based on market maturity, customer technology acceptance, and organizational culture. Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.

Analytics focus

– Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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 Biotechnology & Drugs 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.






Weaknesses of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical | Internal Strategic Factors
What are Weaknesses in SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis

The weaknesses of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical are -

Increasing silos among functional specialists

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

Slow decision making process

– As mentioned earlier in the report, Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical has a very deliberative decision making approach. This approach has resulted in prudent decisions, but it has also resulted in missing opportunities in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry over the last five years. Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical even though has strong showing on digital transformation primary two stages, it has struggled to capitalize the power of digital transformation in marketing efforts and new venture efforts.

Skills based hiring in Biotechnology & Drugs industry

– The stress on hiring functional specialists at Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.

Slow to harness new channels of communication

– Even though competitors are using new communication channels such as Instagram, Tiktok, and Snap, Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical is slow explore the new channels of communication. These new channels of communication can help Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical to provide better information regarding Biotechnology & Drugs products and services. It can also build an online community to further reach out to potential customers.

Workers concerns about automation

– As automation is fast increasing in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry, Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.

High operating costs

– Compare to the competitors, Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical has high operating costs in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry. This can be harder to sustain given the new emerging competition from nimble players who are using technology to attract Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical lucrative customers.

Slow to strategic competitive environment developments

– As Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical is one of the leading players in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry, it takes time to assess the upcoming competitions. This has led to missing out on atleast 2-3 big opportunities in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry in last five years.

Lack of clear differentiation of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical products

– To increase the profitability and margins on the products, Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical needs to provide more differentiated products than what it is currently offering in the marketplace.

High dependence on existing supply chain

– The disruption in the global supply chains because of the Covid-19 pandemic and blockage of the Suez Canal illustrated the fragile nature of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical supply chain. Even after few cautionary changes, Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical is still heavily dependent upon the existing supply chain. The existing supply chain though brings in cost efficiencies but it has left Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical vulnerable to further global disruptions in South East Asia.

Interest costs

– Compare to the competition, Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.

Aligning sales with marketing

– From the outside it seems that Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical needs to have more collaboration between its sales team and marketing team. Sales professionals in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry have deep experience in developing customer relationships. Marketing department at Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical can leverage the sales team experience to cultivate customer relationships as Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical is planning to shift buying processes online.




Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical Opportunities | External Strategic Factors
What are Opportunities in the SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis


The opportunities of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical are -

Finding new ways to collaborate

– Covid-19 has not only transformed business models of companies in Biotechnology & Drugs industry, but it has also influenced the consumer preferences. Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical can tie-up with other value chain partners to explore new opportunities regarding meeting customer demands and building a rewarding and engaging relationship.

Buying journey improvements

– Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical can improve the customer journey of consumers in the Biotechnology & Drugs 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.

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 Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.

Building a culture of innovation

– managers at Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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 Biotechnology & Drugs industry.

Remote work and new talent hiring opportunities

– The widespread usage of remote working technologies during Covid-19 has opened opportunities for Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical to expand its talent hiring zone. According to McKinsey Global Institute, 20% of the high end workforce in fields such as finance, information technology, can continously work from remote local post Covid-19. This presents a really great opportunity for Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical to hire the very best people irrespective of their geographical location.

Redefining models of collaboration and team work

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

Better consumer reach

– The expansion of the 5G network will help Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical to increase its market reach. Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.

Loyalty marketing

– Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical has focused on building a highly responsive customer relationship management platform. This platform is built on in-house data and driven by analytics and artificial intelligence. The customer analytics can help the organization to fine tune its loyalty marketing efforts, increase the wallet share of the organization, reduce wastage on mainstream advertising spending, build better pricing strategies using personalization, etc.

Creating value in data economy

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

Changes in consumer behavior post Covid-19

– consumer behavior has changed in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry because of Covid-19 restrictions. Some of this behavior will stay once things get back to normal. Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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. Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.

Reforming the budgeting process

- By establishing new metrics that will be used to evaluate both existing and potential projects Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical can not only reduce the costs of the project but also help it in integrating the projects with other processes within the organization.

Low interest rates

– Even though inflation is raising its head in most developed economies, Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.

Learning at scale

– Online learning technologies has now opened space for Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.




Threats Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical External Strategic Factors
What are Threats in the SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis


The threats of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical are -

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. Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical needs to understand the core reasons impacting the Biotechnology & Drugs industry. This will help it in building a better workplace.

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. Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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.

Aging population

– As the populations of most advanced economies are aging, it will lead to high social security costs, higher savings among population, and lower demand for goods and services in the economy. The household savings in US, France, UK, Germany, and Japan are growing faster than predicted because of uncertainty caused by pandemic.

Easy access to finance

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

Shortening product life cycle

– it is one of the major threat that Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical is facing in Biotechnology & Drugs sector. It can lead to higher research and development costs, higher marketing expenses, lower customer loyalty, etc.

Learning curve for new practices

– As the technology based on artificial intelligence and machine learning platform is getting complex, Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical may face longer learning curve for training and development of existing employees. This can open space for more nimble competitors in the field of Biotechnology & Drugs sector.

Consumer confidence and its impact on Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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 Biotechnology & Drugs industry and other sectors.

New competition

– After the dotcom bust of 2001, financial crisis of 2008-09, the business formation in US economy had declined. But in 2020 alone, there are more than 1.5 million new business applications in United States. This can lead to greater competition for Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical in the Biotechnology & Drugs sector and impact the bottomline of the organization.

Barriers of entry lowering

– As technology is more democratized, the barriers to entry to Biotechnology & Drugs industry are lowering. It can presents Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical with greater competitive threats in the near to medium future. Secondly it will also put downward pressure on pricing throughout the Biotechnology & Drugs sector.

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.

Increasing international competition and downward pressure on margins

– Apart from technology driven competitive advantage dilution, Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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 Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical prominent markets.

Environmental challenges

– Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical needs to have a robust strategy against the disruptions arising from climate change and energy requirements. EU has identified it as key priority area and spending 30% of its 880 billion Euros European post Covid-19 recovery funds on green technology. Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical can take advantage of this fund but it will also bring new competitors in the Biotechnology & Drugs industry.

Backlash against dominant players

– US Congress and other legislative arms of the government are getting tough on big business especially technology companies. The digital arm of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical business can come under increasing regulations regarding data privacy, data security, etc.




Weighted SWOT Analysis of Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical Template, Example


Not all factors mentioned under the Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats quadrants in the SWOT Analysis are equal. Managers at Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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 Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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 Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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 Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical 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 Nichi Iko Pharmaceutical needs to make to build a sustainable competitive advantage.



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