Impact of Culture on International Business

The number one semiconductor company in the world Applied
Materials recently merged with the world’s number three semiconductor company
Tokyo Elecktron. The stock prices of both companies went up significantly after
the merger was announced, which shows that investors welcome this move that may
create synergies and help both companies battle declining revenues in the
semiconductor industry. However, even though there are potential benefits to
this merger in terms of operational synergies the human side of a merger can
often be difficult. Furthermore, Japanese and American cultures are widely
perceived as being extremely different from each other which may add to the
difficulties in managing the human side of this merger.

1. What do you think the biggest challenge in terms of
cross-cultural management will be in the merger of these two companies?
Remember to consider to issues of differences in national cultural values
between Japan and the U.S.

2. What steps do you recommend be taken to help ease
cultural differences between the two companies?