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Here are the 10 richest companies in Japan: Can you guess which is number one?

11 Comments
By Dale Roll, SoraNews24

Japan has always been known as a global leader for technology and IT development, but like every country, their economy is full of successful business in all kinds of industries. So that might lead you to wonder, what kinds of companies are the richest? On August 25, business consulting company Risk Monster (who previously investigated which Japanese companies are expected to still be around in 50 years) looked into it, and compiled a list of the companies in Japan with the fattest wallets.

Now, it’s important to note that what Risk Monster compared to make this list was not gross profits or annual income, but rather the net cash recorded in each of the company’s account books at the time of the survey.

In accounting, net cash measures a company’s ability to quickly pay expenses and debts. It’s calculated as total cash (including assets that can be quickly turned to cash) minus total liabilities. While it doesn’t necessarily mean that a company is having high profits, in general, having high net cash is a good thing, because the more you have, the more you can use to expand your business.

Either way, for the purposes of Risk Monster’s survey, companies with high net cash are considered “rich” because they have money to spend. (and also because the standard Japanese phrase for “rich,” kanemochi, literally means “has money”). You might expect big international names like Sony or Honda to be on the list of companies that have high net cash, but actually the majority are not the usual world-famous, globally branded Japanese companies that you might be familiar with. Well, except for the top richest company, which is probably Japan’s most famous company of all, even over major tech and car companies. If you think about it a little, you might be able to guess who it is.

The top ten richest Japanese companies are:

  1. Rohm Semiconductor (257.3 billion yen/ $2.6 billion)
  2. Shimano (266.9 billion yen)
  3. Taisei Corporation (274.7 billion yen)
  4. Secom (360.1 billion yen)
  5. Seven and I Holdings (374.7 billion yen)
  6. Fanuc Corporation (405.8 billion yen)
  7. Keyence (476.6 billion yen)
  8. SMC Corporation (536.7 billion yen)
  9. Shin-Etsu Chemical Co (813 billion yen)
  10. Nintendo (890.4 billion yen / $8.5 billlion)

Nintendo, at the top, is the only video game company to reach the top ten in net cash amounts. Even among the top twenty, the only other company involved in the game industry is Bandai Namco Holdings at number 18 (189.8 billion yen), which is also a major presence in the toy, anime, and entertainment categories.

It’s no surprise that Nintendo would have such a huge net cash bank, as they’re a very stable, successful, global company that is capable of both earning a high positive net cash flow and attracting high investments. But what’s also interesting is the difference between the top richest and tenth richest companies’ net cash: Nintendo has more than three times as much as electronic parts manufacturing company Rohm, which might give you cause to wonder why.

What about the other companies? Many of them are either tech companies and parts manufacturers which undoubtedly need a lot of cash to participate in research and development. Some, like SMC Corporation, Keyence, and Fanuc, the third, fourth, and fifth richest companies, are in the business of automation equipment, products, and services, all of which are in high demand for manufacturing.

Shin-Etsu Chemical Co, number two on the list, is the largest chemical company in Japan with a huge share of the world’s production of PVC and silicone, so it’s no surprise that they’ve got the second most amount of cash in their purses. Coincidentally, they also produce semiconductor silicone for use in electronics, and have also worked on lithium battery development, so they, too, can fall into the tech and parts manufacturing category.

The other companies in the top ten are in different industries. You would probably expect Seven & I Holdings, the parent company of 7-11, which dominates the country’s convenience store market, to make the cut. Secom, a security company which has been working on virtual security guards, and Taisei Corporation, the construction company in charge of building Tokyo’s new Olympic stadium, are also big companies with major projects that you would expect to keep a lot of cash on hand.

But who would have thought that Shimano, which is actually a bicycle parts, fishing tackle, and rowing equipment manufacturer, would beat out Rohm, an electronic parts manufacturer?

The list gives us an interesting look at the economy of Japanese businesses. Of course, as previously mentioned, net cash does not necessarily indicate the health of a company, but it does indicate whether that company has the potential to grow in the near future, as it represents whether they have the cash to invest in new enterprises, research, and development.

In other words, Nintendo could be about invest its hundreds of billions of yen in something new. Maybe this means that the rumors of a new Nintendo Switch model could be true after all!

Sources: MyNavi News via livedoor news via Hachima Kiko, Investopedia

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- Japan’s ‘agri-tech’ farming revolution

-- Nintendo announces grand opening date for new official shop in Tokyo, shows off exclusive merch

-- We preview Japan’s first-ever Nintendo Tokyo, Capcom Store and Shibuya Pokémon Centre megastore

© SoraNews24

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

11 Comments
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It's sad really. the top 10 has less cash than Apple alone. Corporate tax is so high in Japan it really stifles their growth. The reason their cash stocks are so low is because the government takes half of all corporate profits. Once you count the taxes the companies pay to cover their employees pension and health benefits corporate taxes are well over 50% here. The companies have to spend their money somewhere or invest overseas. Anything left over will be confiscated by the government to feed their inefficient payrolls.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Shimano has been dominant for bike parts for at least 30 years now.

Do not confuse volume with quality. When I was younger Shimano was what you bought if you couldn't afford anything better. Most riders were content with Shimano but serious / competitive riders were willing to pay the premium necessary for better quality Italian components.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Shimano has been dominant for bike parts for at least 30 years now.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

No brainer. Shimano owns the global bicycle brakes and derailleur segment. I can't remember one of their parts ever failing.

It wasn't always that way. When I was a teen riding bikes Shimano was considered to be lower priced and not so well made. Their 1970s stuff was not very durable. It really wasn't. Nobody riding competitively trusted them to last through a race. If you wanted quality you bought Campanognolo derailures and SR cranks.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Actually, the Chinese owned the whole global industry but we only account Shimano for the segment of high-quality bicycles in the West.

There's volume share and value share. Shimano owns the latter.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Apple is worth more than all of this companies combined!

and yet the Iphone uses parts nearly all made and assembled by foreign companies.

Tesla has cutting edge technology in batteries and software, just surpassed Toyota one of the oldest and biggest car companies for decades.

Battery technology in Teslas are by Panasonic, it surpassed Toyota in market value, yet Toyota is far more profitable and and makes far more cars , has been for decades

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Interesting. I wonder if hoarding cash is a good thing. Interest rates are pretty much zero so they can borrow for almost nothing.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Most of these companies have high foreign ownership or completely foreign-owned. I am not entirely surprised. The only way for Japanese companies making huge money and having a high stock value is through the foreign ownership, mostly Chinese or American.

Nintendo is actually an American company at this point due to the dominant number of American shareholders.

No brainer. Shimano owns the global bicycle brakes and derailleur segment. 

Actually, the Chinese owned the whole global industry but we only account Shimano for the segment of high-quality bicycles in the West.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I am honestly a bit surprised, I thought big companies such as Toyota, Sony, Mitsubishi, etc. would be in the top

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Apple is worth more than all of this companies combined!

Tesla has cutting edge technology in batteries and software, just surpassed Toyota one of the oldest and biggest car companies for decades.

Japan has fallen to 3rd place when it comes to GDP and the difference between 1 place USA and 2nd place China is several times Japan's GDP. In the next 20 years all predictions indicate strongly Japan falling to number 9th or 10th. We will continue falling on the ladder of GDP. Serious change is necessary, a stronger Japan, willing to compete and take risk is necessary to remain relevant in tomorrow's economy.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

But who would have thought that Shimano, which is actually a bicycle parts, fishing tackle, and rowing equipment manufacturer, would beat out Rohm, an electronic parts manufacturer?

No brainer. Shimano owns the global bicycle brakes and derailleur segment. I can't remember one of their parts ever failing.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

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