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Japan Top 30

Have Japan-owned companies fallen prey to Japan's economic woes?

The sudden slowdown of Japan’s nascent economy over the past year reflected only slightly in this year’s list of Top 30 Japan-owned companies. In fact, total combined revenues for the companies on the list ($3.127 million) were 6 percent more than year 1999 revenues. For the third consecutive year, Kyo-Ya Co. Ltd and JTB Hawaii Inc. topped the list with sales each of $587 million and $426 million. Travel company JTB Hawaii grew 20 percent, while Kyo-Ya – an operator of hotels, insurance agencies and restaurants – jumped 7.7 percent. Hawaii Business also welcomes three new participants to the list: Matsushita Electric Corp. of America Hawaii ($32.3 million); Daichiya-Love’s Bakery Inc. ($31.5 million); and Nishimoto Trading Co. Hawaii Ltd. ($27.1 million). The newcomers ranked No. 27, 28 and 29, respectively.

Electronic goods wholesaler Sony Hawaii Co. recorded the strongest sales performance with revenues of $153 million, a 59.4 percent boost over last year’s revenues of $96 million. Sales increases of 19 percent each also were made by Shinwa Golf Hawaii Co. Ltd., real-estate developer Obayashi Hawaii Corp. and Wasa Electrical Services Inc., which jumped seven places to No. 36 this year.

Two companies that previously participated in the annual list – Otaka Inc. (a golf course and hotel operator) and Nippon Travel Hawaii Agency Inc. – declined this year, due to new management or corporate policies that ban public disclosure of revenues. Another company that did not participate in 2001 was Shirokiya Inc., which posted revenues of $50 million last year. Parent company Tokyu Department Store Co., a $4.5 billion retail giant hit by financial woes in Japan, closed its Maui and Pearlridge locations this year and agreed last March to sell its Ala Moana Shopping Center store to employees for $1. Tokyu Department Store’s predicament mirrors Japan’s struggle with bad bank loans and failing corporations.

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Hawaii Business,July