Saturday, January 12, 2013

Education From Korean Dramas

Look what I found sitting in my drafts for more than a year (or two)! This post was initiated during the days when I actually had time to stream K-dramas online after work. Ah, what awesome times those days were! To be able to do things at my whim and fancy... stay up late with little consequences... Oh well, let me just continue what I started a long time ago then (I had even left links in my draft for future reference to aid in the composition!):-

With all the Korean drama craze going about for the past couple of years, chances are you would have seen or heard of Lotte. In fact, as far back as I can recall, we've always had a section of imported Japanese foods in some of our supermarkets and usually they would have a specialised aisle with shelves displaying Lotte sweets or chewing gum or chocolates, right next to Meiji's confectionery.

I've always thought that Lotte was a South Korean brand, but what I didn't know till just a couple of hours ago (N.B.: few years ago as at the publish time) is that the company was started in Japan by a Japanese/Korean businessman Shin Kyuk-Ho (Japanese name: Takeo Shigemitsu), fresh out of high school. Only after 19 years did Lotte arrive in Korea and subsequently grew into a major MNC with operations across the globe. From selling chewing gum to kids, Lotte has expanded into diverse industries and is the leading candy and chewing gum manufacturer in Japan and Korea.

An interesting bit of trivia about the name "Lotte" - the founder Shigemitsu had named the company after the heroine Charlotte in Goethe's The Sorrows of Young Werther. And this, was mentioned in the Chairman's message on their Malaysian corporate website.

A friend had told me that she visited Lotte World while holidaying in South Korea. At first, I thought that the theme park's name was a coincidence but upon digging deeper, it turned out to be part of the Lotte Group and was the largest indoor theme park in the world! What's more? They even own baseball teams in Japan and Korea!

It is interesting and inspiring to read about how a small simple business could grow into household brand!

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