Uncertainty, globalization and trust: How PwC suits the Japanese market
In describing PwC’s presence in Japan, firm leaders said professionals in the consulting practice make up 2,500 of 7,300 total at the PwC Japan firm, with the practice’s revenues growing more than 20% year-to-year.
Echoing sentiments expressed by PwC consulting leaders last month in New York City, the Japan-based team said systems integration (SI) work, currently earning approximately 20% of consulting revenues, would expand in coming years as the BXT model pulls through long-tail SI opportunities. Speaking more broadly about the Japanese market, PwC’s leaders noted that their own research revealed that Japanese companies believe the U.S. and China matter most with respect to overall growth, with the U.S. economy increasingly more important to Japanese companies than China’s economy. In addition, while global executives have cited overregulation, terrorism and geopolitical uncertainty as the top three threats to growth, Japanese executives are worried most about the availability of key skills, especially in digital and emerging technologies. Further rounding out the landscape, PwC’s Japan-based leaders said local companies have expressed a renewed interest in overseas M&A opportunities, in part due to saturation of the Japanese market. PwC leaders added that previous “misconduct” by acquired companies and overseas subsidiaries makes some Japanese companies nervous, causing them to exercise caution and restraint when considering potential acquisitions. Even after folding in cybersecurity issues and overall political and economic risk, plus the costs associated with post-merger integration, the M&A picture appears positive, but quietly so. Within this complete market environment, PwC’s local leaders, including Susumu Adachi, Consulting CEO (Japan); Yukinori Morishita, Group Markets leader; and Nobuaki Otake, Business Transformation lead partner, repeated the message that PwC’s expanding role in Japan revolved around trust—a familiar refrain from previous PwC Experience Center visits and analyst events in Miami, New York, Shanghai, Toronto, and Frankfurt, Germany.
On Oct. 3, PwC’s Tokyo Experience Center hosted its first-ever Analyst Day in Japan, marking a significant expansion of the firm’s BXT approach across the globe. Leading the event, Koichiro Kimura, PwC’s Japan group chairman and territory senior partner, outlined the firm’s growth and strategy in Japan as well as initiatives launched by both the Experience Center and the firm’s Data & Analytics (D&A) practice. PwC leaders and Japan-based clients rounded out the event with detailed examples of the firm’s relationships and work across multiple offerings, including cybersecurity, business process reengineering, artificial intelligence and change management.