The purpose of this papar is to investigate the careers of 158 white-collar workers employed by Yawata Steel in 1900, and to shed light on some aspects of the making of business white-collar employees particular to Japanese industrialization. As far as the white-collar employees studied here are concerned, one can hardly find any who had worked their way up from the ranks of artisans or skilled workers, or who had previously been employed in the traditional sector of commerce. For the most part, the careers of these personnel were limited to white-collar jobs in a broad sense, including various occupations such as business staff employees, government officials, teachers, policemen, and soldiers. A most striking fact is that a significant number of these people had experience in several different kinds of white-collar employment. This indicates that the demarcations between categories of white-collar employment were vague in early stages of Japanese industrialization. In other word, business staff personnal did not yet exist as an independent occupational group but rather fell within the broadly-defind category of white-collar workers. Based on the statistics regarding birthdate and social status, it appears that white-collar jobs were held almost exclusively by persons of samurai heritage at the beginning of the Meiji era, but that such post were becoming increasingly open to persons from all social backgrounds by 1880's. What made these changes in the make-up of white-collar workers possible was the spread of a wide variety of educational opportunities-except for regular secondary and higher schools-open to persons regardless of social status. These ranged from unsystematic education such as individual tutoring, shijuku, short training courses and correspondence schools, to the “irregular” miscellaneous schools called kakushu-gakko, and appecars to have played a critical role in satisfying a considerable demand for white-collar workers, especially in middle and lower levels that did arise in the course of Japanese industrialization.
The objective of this paper is to examine changes in the vertical integration of distribution with regard to marketing policy during Japan's High Growth Period (1955-1973). Specifically, I deal with the senmon-hanbaigaishya (calling hansha) a system of selling companies created by the Kao Corporation, a major manufacturer, by the forward integration of wholesale distribution. With the shift in market demand during the High Growth Period from soaps to detergents, two characteristics of the traditional wholesalers became apprent : 1) inefficiency due to excessive fragmentation, and 2) a large discrepancy in size between the various wholesalers. On the other hand, a new force in distribution appeared with the advent in retail business of supermarkets, which used brand-name toiletary products in loss-leader selling. In October 1964, Kao responded to these developments by instituting a program of Resale Price Maintenance (R.P.M.) which reformed trade practices in an attempt to stabilize prices. However, it oved ineffective due to the shortcoming that it continued to use general wholesalers who also dealt with other toiletary products from competing manufacturers. This prompted Kao to take a further step of establishing a network of selling companies, the hansha, that handled only Kao products. Kao's hansha was a vertical integration of existing wholesalers undertaken in response to the fierce competition between toiletary manufacturers following the development of new detergent products as well as an out growth of the R.P.M. strategies that were implemented due to the appearance of supermark retailers. The hansha network of manufacturer's selling companies was established in three steps : initial selling companies, national selling companies, and broad-region selling companies. The initial selling companies were set up from specific whole salers from specific areas. Due to new trading practices implemented by Kao in 1968, national selling companies came into being when all primary and secondary wholesalers participated financially in the manufacturer's selling companies. After the hansha became a nationwide network, a series of mergers by selling companies brought about the broad-region selling companies. The implemetation of Kao's hansha system had a wide impact on the entire toiletary industry. For exemple, it prompted co-operation between small wholesalers as can be seen in the establishment of several jointpurchase institutions. It also caused the creation of broad-region selling companies from the merger of smaller selling companies, prompted one of Kao's competitors to adopt a multi-divisional structure of management, and brought about the establishment of a joint-purchase institution. With this modern system for managing the flow of both goods and information, Kao has been able to defend its position as top toiletary manufacturer in Japan since the oil embargo of 1973.