As I’ve been teaching around diversification strategies in one of my subjects this week, I was amused to see this short grab from satirical news site The Onion, conjuring up a quote from a CEO:
“At the Yamaha Corporation we’re focused on one thing and one thing alone—quality sound chips, ceiling brackets, editing software, race-kart engines, sport boats, flugelhorns, ATVs, sequencers, outboard motors, conference systems, golf clubs, projectors, MIDI controllers, lamp cartridges, portable recorders, subwoofers, component systems, and motorcycles.”
Scarily this supposed example of extreme diversity (and delusions about singlemindedness), is not that far-fetched when you consider the holdings of two Aussie extreme diversifiers at their peak in the 1980s.
Adelaide Steamship (through a stunningly complex system of cross-ownership) operated across these markets (and beyond): shipping, department stores, wineries, lockmaking, building supplies, meat, mining, real estate, brewing and earthmoving equipment.
Pacific Dunlop’s interests spread across tyres, rubber gloves, condoms, sporting equipments, footwear, stationery, food, medical equipment, electrical goods, bedding, and batteries.
They actually do make The Onion’s mythical mix seem quite sensible.
All credit to the folks at the O&M Blog for finding The Onion link.