Yosuke Honjo wants everyone in North America to drink his green tea

Ito En sells over $4 Billion USD of tea annually in Japan.

January 05, 2018
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Ito En sells over $4 Billion USD of tea annually in Japan. In North America Ito En hits $300 million. In this classic international brand building story, Yosuke Honjo, CEO and President of Ito En North America, describes how his company pushed by a shrinking population and growing competition domestically, “Must go out from Japan and find a new market internationally.”

 

His plan includes continually fighting a dual battle with the beverage Goliaths, Coca-Cola and Pepsi. He not only must carve out space with retailers for his tea, but also respond to merger questions from these competitors, “We always say no”. Then beyond building a market, sits the major complexity of selling FDA regulated food products - that are made in Japan, China and Taiwan - into the US.

 

Yosuke Honjo is a graduate of the USC IBEAR MBA program.

 

Dick Drobnick

Interview by Dick Drobnick, Director of the USC IBEAR MBA Program.

Yosuke Honjo wants everyone in North America to drink his green tea
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Yosuke Honjo, CEO & President Ito En North America

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