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Exploring the components of success for the Korean chaebols

Du Sig Choi (Seoul Women's University, Seoul, South Korea)
Paul Michell (Leeds University Business School, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK)
Dayananda Palihawadana (Leeds University Business School, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK)

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing

ISSN: 0885-8624

Article publication date: 13 June 2008




This paper aims to discuss the profiles of Korean chaebols involved in global electronics


The research was conducted among 132 of their Korean suppliers, with linked in‐depth interviews with chaebol managers. From an initial set of literature‐based variables, factor analysis is used to generate six chaebol characteristics, which are then correlated with four chaebol‐supplier relationship outcomes.


“Decision making” and “social exchange”, in particular, are found to correlate positively with all four chaebol‐supplier relationship outcome measures, relationship satisfaction, performance, cooperation and conflict resolution. “Partnership” is associated positively with three of these outcomes, and “strategy‐longevity” with relationship satisfaction. The chaebols' “structure‐control” and “leadership” are not found to be predictors of successful relationship outcomes as measured in this study. A combination of higher quality, lower cost products with linkages to a foundation of decision making, social exchange, partnership and strategy‐longevity appears to be a potent mix for global players.


The paper provides the underpinnings of the marketing strategy and component strategy profiles of a number of major Korean multinationals in the belief that they would inform western relationship marketing strategies.



Sig Choi, D., Michell, P. and Palihawadana, D. (2008), "Exploring the components of success for the Korean chaebols", Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, Vol. 23 No. 5, pp. 311-322.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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