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The History of Kirin Developing and Implementing a Long-Range Management Plan(1981-1987)

Following two oil crises, it became obvious in the late 1970s and early 1980s that the Japanese beer market had reached maturity. Faced with this reality, Kirin Brewery formulated its Long-Range Management Plan in December 1981. In this go-forward plan, the company stated the goal of expanding its businesses into areas related to food and beverages, health, and culture to become a company that offers customers beer and other comforts of life that make their lives more fulfilling and enjoyable. To achieve this goal, the company chose to diversify its business lines—reducing its overdependence on the beer business so as to build and maintain a well-balanced portfolio expected of a financially sound enterprise.

The second phase of diversification outlined in the Long-Range Management Plan called for a foray into the field of life sciences such as pharmaceuticals. Accordingly, the company's Applied Bioscience Laboratory, established in 1982, conducted research in erythropoietin (EPO), a hormone that promotes the formation of red blood cells in the bone marrow. Kirin Brewery and Amgen Inc., a U.S. biotechnology company, co-established Kirin-Amgen, Inc. in 1984, which went on to mass-produce EPO.

Kirin Brewery recognized the need to refresh its corporate image and philosophy so that they would reflect the company's increasingly diverse portfolio of businesses. The company started to develop a corporate identity (CI) system in 1983, and unveiled the following year a new company philosophy, corporate slogan, and a set of visual identity guidelines. The new company philosophy underlined the importance of creating new value, in addition to the virtues of being focused on quality and of conducting sound business management, which had been emphasized in the older philosophy. In 1986, Kirin Brewery began formulating and implementing a medium-term business plan that outlined the company's strategic initiatives and action plans with a focus on allocating management resources to diversification of businesses and to developing businesses internationally. In 1987, as part of organizational realignment, the company established strategic business units along business lines.

ESPO®, an erythropoietin preparation and therapeutic agent for renal anemia, from 1990
Kirin Brewery's CI manual from 1985

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© 2007 Kirin Holdings Company, Limited.

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