Japan-US Business Report LogoJapan-U.S. Business Report

No. 340, January 1998

Issue Index

Japanese Companies in the US


Another Japanese company has decided to cut its losses on an acquisition made during the takeover boom of the late 1980s. SETTSU CORP. agreed to sell UARCO INC., which ranks fifth in the U.S. business-forms market, to the number-three player, STANDARD REGISTER CO., for $245 million. Settsu paid a reported $550 million for Barrington, Illinois-based Uarco in 1988. That firm, which has about 3,200 employees between its 18 production facilities and 125 sales offices, lost money on 1996 revenues of $489 million and remained unprofitable through the first three quarters of 1997. Standard Register, headquartered in Dayton, Ohio, will not assume any of Uarco's long-term debt.

MITSUBISHI CORP.'s search for additional lines of business has produced a contract with GENERAL NUTRITION CORP., the operator of the largest chain of health food stores in the United States, to supply natural ingredients and other materials for new products. If the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-based company decides to introduce products based on any of the samples, the big trader will be the sole source of supply for those ingredients, all of which have been designated as safe for human consumption in Japan.

The wholly owned subsidiary of SUMITOMO METAL MINING CO., LTD. has found what it believes is a promising deposit of gold in a field about 185 miles north of Anchorage, Alaska. The reserve is estimated to hold about 150 tons. Sumitomo Metal and a Canadian company will study the feasibility of developing the site over the next three years.

An exchange rate of ¥130=$1.00 was used in this report.

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