How to become the world's leading tool brand

How to become the world's leading tool brand

In 2017, STANLEY BLACK & DECKER, the world's largest tool company, announced the acquisition of CRAFSMAN, a century-old American tool manufacturer, for $900 million. At the time, Jim Laurie, President and CEO of Stanley Black & Decker, said in high spirits:

"We are determined to revive this iconic American brand and bring back its American heritage..."

"Stanley Black & Decker will focus on manufacturing in America using world-class materials..."

Keep talking about it in 2019:

"Two years ago we launched a new brand identity for CRAFTSMAN and are constantly striving to bring more of these great pieces back to the US..."

How to become the world's leading tool brand

5 years later, Stanley Black & Decker does not seem to have delivered on its promise to the Red Necks in the US. to Vietnam, where the price is lower. And not only did the factory not move to the US, Stanley also failed to deliver on his promise to make the CRFTSMAN brand great again.

It seems that not only for us, but also for Americans, it is also easy to get into the top and cut leek.

It's actually not hard to understand Stanley Black & Decker's approach. Stanley Black & Decker is one of the Fortune 500 companies in the United States, with annual revenue reaching an all-time high of $15.6 billion in 2021. It has exceeded 100 billion yuan.

Let's put it this way, in Yongkang City of Zhejiang Province, known as the hardware capital, in 2021, the total industrial production value of the entire Yongkang City has just reached the level of 100 billion yuan, which is almost exactly equal to Stanley Black & Decker.

Why is Stanley Black & Decker so great? Rely on the age-old feel of the instrument? By product innovation? brand matrix? Perhaps both.

But more important is the capital of Stanley Black & Decker.

When we opened the equity structure of Stanley Black & Decker, it was almost difficult to find individual shareholders, and there were almost no shadows of the founders. Some of them were funds and investment companies such as Vanguard and JPMorgan. Chase.

In fact, not only Stanley Black & Decker, but most tool brands in the US have metropolitan experience. Domestic SATA Star, the parent company of APEX, is also owned by US-based Bain Capital. KKR, which acquired the well-known Japanese power tool brand HITACHI (later renamed HIKOKI) in 2017, is also a very good private equity fund.

In short, on the basis of capitalism, the brand has long been mastered. Not only high-end manufacturing, capital market and financial market, we are still elementary school students.

How to become the world's leading tool brand

Centenary of Makita

First, the legacy and glory of the family

Chinese Makita, Makita, Japanese name マキタ

On April 27, 2022, Makita announced its financial results for 2021, which amounted to 739.260 billion yen, or about 39.1 billion yuan. This result is still alone in China.

Makita is the largest power tool manufacturer in Japan, with a market share of about 60% in Japan. Makita has been manufacturing and selling outside of Japan since the 1970s, with over 80% of sales outside of Japan. The brand is known all over the world, if you count by one brand, then only Bosch and Makita are comparable in the global power tool market. In addition, Makita's financial position is very good: since its inception, it has remained profitable and has undergone almost no restructuring, such as layoffs.

Makita is headquartered in Aichi Prefecture, Japan, which is a major industrial region in Japan and the center of the Chukyo Industrial Zone. Nominal gross domestic product (GDP) and per capita income are second only to Tokyo in Japan. The annual supply of industrial goods reaches 48 trillion yen, ranking first in Japan for 44 consecutive years. In 2019, merchandise sales amounted to 33 trillion 7292 billion yen, ranking third in Japan. There are many automobile companies in Aichi Prefecture, including Toyota Motor Corporation. Toyota Motor was founded in 1937. After a period of rapid economic growth, Aichi Prefecture's automobile industry has developed into a highly developed industry.

March 21, 1915, Makita Electric Manufacturing Co., Ltd. was founded in Nagoya City, Aichi Prefecture. At that time, the First World War had just begun, and it was an era of rapid growth in demand for electricity. There are only 4 people in the entrepreneurial team: the owner of the factory is 21-year-old Mosaburo Makita, 17-year-old artisan Goto Jujiro and 2 boys who have just graduated from elementary school. The initial business included the repair and sale of lighting equipment, motors, transformers and other products in schools.

In 1920, Meiji Electric, headquartered in Tokyo, experienced a crisis and decided to close the Nagoya branch and sell machinery and equipment. Meiji Electric manufactures, sells and repairs 50 horsepower motors and transformers. Shigesaburo Makita purchased the equipment with financial support from his father.

How to become the world's leading tool brand

In 1955, one of the founders, Jujiro Goto, became president. At the time, Makita was in decline due to the economic downturn following the Korean War and was on the verge of bankruptcy. Under such conditions, Goto Jujiro introduced new strategies one after another. The most important of these is the "development of original finished products." However, Makita's main products are still electric motors, which are just parts used as power sources for machine tools, weaving machines and woodworking machines, and finished products are sold to consumers by the piece.

How to become the world's leading tool brand

In 1957, Makita began developing a "portable electric planer" that could take advantage of the motor technology that Makita had perfected over the years. After trial and error, the first portable electric planer (Model 1000) was released to the market in 1958. The Model 1000 allows the inexperienced to work just like the experienced, with a smooth and beautiful finish. In addition, it is much cheaper than imported products. The Model 1000 became a hit shortly after its release and was well received by domestic builders and carpenters in Japan at the time. Makita thus began his career as a professional power tool manufacturer.

How to become the world's leading tool brand

In the 1970s, a new plant (Okazaki Factory) was opened in Okazaki City, Aichi Prefecture, equipped with modern equipment for mass production. The latest machinery and equipment were introduced one by one, and a production system was established to meet the growing demand and the need for quality improvement.

In the 1980s, computer-controlled factory automation made headway in Japanese industry. The Okazaki plant is also promoting the rationalization and automation of production equipment to further improve the speed and quality of production.

The current President of Makita is Sotoshi Goto, Masahiko Goto, chairman, and the grandson and son of Jujiro Goto, one of the founders mentioned above, respectively. The fund passed into the hands of the family.

Second, go global

In terms of sales, Makita started opening overseas subsidiaries one by one. In 1970 Makita America was founded, the first overseas subsidiary. The following year, Masahiko Goto (the current chairman of Makita) and others were sent. The United States is the primary home of power tools and the most important battleground for brand competition, which is extremely fierce.

In 1973, Japan introduced a floating exchange rate system, and the yen began to appreciate sharply. In the beginning, conditions for Makita in the US were relatively difficult. Together with Makita, sales and service bases are opened in major cities such as Chicago and Los Angeles. At the same time, the high quality of Japanese products such as Toyota and Sony began to attract attention in the United States, and sales began to grow rapidly. With good economic performance and high-quality after-sales service, it has been praised by users and dealers, and Makita products are steadily penetrating the North American market.

Following the United States, Makita has successively set up local subsidiaries in France, the UK and Australia to expand the market, and detailed sales strategies according to the conditions of each country have been consistently effective. Thus Makita became "World Makita".

April 1991 - Makita officially changed its name to Makita Co., Ltd. and brought in Italian industrial designer Giorgetto Giugiaro to design the logo that is still in use today.

Thirdly, the layout of foreign production

From the 1970s to the early 1990s, Makita had to deal with various dumping complaints and trade frictions, such as the appreciation of the yen, while expanding its business around the world. In the Japanese market at the time, an indefinite Heisei recession followed the collapse of the bubble economy in 1990. In this volatile situation, the need to remain independent of changes in the external environment, such as exchange rates, is becoming increasingly apparent.

In world trade, if you export, you willNo matter how much effort you put in, currency risk is inevitable. To overcome this, a further increase in local production is needed. In 1991, it began manufacturing power tools in the UK, and in 1995, it opened a factory in Kunshan, Jiangsu Province, China, and began manufacturing power tools, Makita's first production base in Asia. To this day, it is still the core of Makita's global supply chain.

At the same time, since Makita invested in Kunshan in 1995, it has received strong support from Kunshan Development Zone, and the scale of the factory has continued to expand. In the past 27 years, Makita Industry has increased capital and expanded production seven times in Kunshan Development Zone. In the past, the plant mainly produced power tools. In recent years, Makita has devoted itself to the development of OPE rechargeable products as important strategic products. The factory covers an area of ​​64,000 square meters. This factory will serve as the fourth factory to supply products and components to countries around the world, and will take on the mission of the future main factory.

Today, in addition to China and the UK, Makita also has factories in Brazil, Mexico, Romania, Germany, Dubai, Vietnam, Thailand and the United States. About 90% of products are produced at foreign factories. In the future, Makita expects to further increase its production capacity to quickly produce and deliver products in response to local demand. These overseas factories have facilitated the shift of production to overseas factories, transforming from a local manufacturing and export company into a truly global company.

Fourthly, a rich product line


Complete range of general power tools for drilling, screwdriving, cutting and polishing in various environments such as homes, construction sites, factories, etc.

Landscape and gardening

Makita offers a wide range of products, from simple gardening to professional gardening, to support the creation of green living spaces. As for fuel-powered tools, striving to be in harmony with the environment, they have the characteristics of "no exhaust", "easy start", "extremely low noise", etc., and actively promote the development of battery gardening equipment.


To meet the needs of cleaning professionals in offices, shops and warehouses, as well as construction sites, Makita develops a wide range of products, such as products that excel in mobility, products that improve suction and durability, and products that reduce noise from products.

Peripheral/Outdoor/Disaster Relief

Makita has pre-proposed a range of comfort field products that are useful not only in the field, but also outdoors and at thevisualization of the consequences of natural disasters.

Makita is committed to supporting the creation of prosperous societies around the world. Aiming to become a "global supplier of useful tools for people's and families' lives", the company is constantly expanding its battery-oriented product line, such as power tools and garden equipment, to meet the diverse needs of customers. One battery can be used for many Makita products. Platform battery compatibility and a rich product line are Makita's main advantages. The battery platform is also the standard product matrix configuration of the world's major power tool brands.

Makita has also developed the Makpac stacking system, also known as FESTOOL.

5. Key Technologies

In terms of technology, Makita is a world leader and is thriving

In 1958, Makita developed and sold a portable electric planer in Japan, and just a year later began to produce more power tools.

In April 1969, they launched the first cordless drill/driver, the 6500D, on the world market.

In December 1978, they released the 6010D Cordless Drill/Driver, which is also the world's first nickel-cadmium battery powered tool.

In August 1997, the company introduced the 6213D Cordless Drill Driver at the Chicago Hardware Show. This is the first NiMH cordless tool on the world market.

In February 2005, the company launched its first tool with a lithium-ion battery. Industry-leading cordless lithium-ion impact driver launched.

In the same year, an electric rotary hammer drill equipped with Anti Vibration Technology (AVT) was launched. The working efficiency is increased by 20% compared to traditional machines, and the vibration is reduced by about 30%. These lithium-ion batteries and AVT products have had a huge impact on the market, generating significant sales growth.

STAR PROTECTION COMPUTER CONTROLS™: STAR is a communication technology that monitors conditions during use, allowing the tool and battery to communicate to protect against overload, over-discharge and overheating.

ACTIVE 3 CONTROLS. With Active 3 controls, the battery and charger communicate and communicate through the battery's built-in chip to control current, voltage and temperature. Optimal management of these conditions is designed to help optimize the charging process so that the battery lasts longer and spends less time charging.

XPT™ EXTREME PROTECTION TECHNOLOGY: This is a series of integral seals designed to lock in more dirt and water for longer life. No matter where you work, Makita tools with technologyand XPT™ are designed for heavy-duty applications and provide enhanced reliability for extended tool life.

AUTO SPEED CHANGE. This technology regulates speed and torque for optimal performance even in the toughest conditions. During operation, if the tool is under heavy load, Automatically Speed ​​Change™ detects the increased demand and applies more torque and speed to get the job done.

DXT™ DEEP AND PRECISE CUT TECHNOLOGY: This is a set of features that give Makita miter saws greater cutting power and unrivaled precision for superior cutting performance.

6. Makita success at a glance

Makita's international success is mainly due to the manufacturing enterprise through technological innovation,According to the high value-added link in the industrial chain, and obtain the embodiment of premium. In the context of industrial modernization, the entire Chinese manufacturing industry is also facing this. And an analysis of the entire process of this technology company from engines to products, from production to global sales, can highlight three kinds of capabilities that the Chinese manufacturing industry needs in the process of industrial upgrading:

1. Break through the barriers of core technology. Power tools are only part of Makita's product line. There are also OPE, PTA, cleaning tools, and many more product lines. d Several scenarios, in fact it is the process of continuous application of technological innovation after the breakthrough of the lower level of technology.

2. Use technology for profit, not labor. Every step forward by Makita is accompanied by the birth of key technologies. In recent years, domestic instrument brands have also become very distinctive, that is, the prices of flagship products are almost the same as foreign mature brands. For example, Huawei tools, Vickers, Dayou, etc., for the Chinese consumer market, the emergence of high-quality products accepted by the market is the most important step for brands to drive upstream industry chain upgrading.

3. Participate in the global market competition with other international brands. Whether it is power tools, cordless tools, garden tools, or even power tool consumables, Makita has been targeting the global market from the very beginning, engaging in international competition with foreign brands rather than relying on profitability to win at home. In order to take this step, strong R&D and product capabilities are needed.

4. The product contains both tangible and intangible technologies. ostangible details such as size, parameters, production process and appearance can be easily imitated, but the intangible technology, craftsmanship and experience accumulated by enterprises and craftsmen year after year cannot be taken away by competitors. This is exactly what Makita has learned . can learn the essence of Japanese production and business.

Family glory, focus spirit, pushing the boundaries spirit in the genes, treating customers as friends, continuous research and development and innovation, comprehensive quality management and responsibility concept of Japanese corporate style humanism - all Makita is the essence of global success.

Stones from other mountains can be used to attack jade,

From 1949 to 1978, we considered the Soviet Union as our teacher,

Comprehensively implement the planned economy, state-owned enterprises dominate the world and lay the basic industrial foundation, but people's living standards are low;

From 1979 to 2018, the teachers were the United Kingdom and the United States.

Comprehensively study and create a market economy, consider "science and technology as the main productive force", and through the introduction, development and assimilation of all advanced foreign technologies, China has created the most advanced industrial system in the world and has become a "global factory".

Over the past 20 years, China, as a world factory, has benefited from the high division of labor under globalization, but one fact must be recognized: the domestic tool industry is still dominated by assembly and processing, and the breakthrough in core technologies is far from enough, not to mention the so-called brand premium.

From acquaintance with Europe and the USA to walks with Germany and Japan;

Although it seems that Germany and Japan have almost completely missed the third industrial revolution that began in the US around 1990, that is, the information technology revolution. Thus, in the field of the Internet today, the US has FAANG (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, Google) etc., and China has Huawei, BAT,, Meituan, Pinduoduo, Xiaomi, Toutiao, etc. e.

In Germany and Japan, there are almost no particularly well-known large Internet companies. First the United States and then China seem to be the biggest winners of the third industrial revolution and the wave of globalization. But what is surprising is that not only did Germany and Japan not fall into decline, but in this era of rapid globalization, relying on their own high-tech industrial production, they showed amazing resilience in many areas such as new energy, new materials and science. about life, precision machining and other fields are still leading the world. On the contrary, the vast majority of Chinese manufacturing is still in the Industry 2.0 stage, and there is an urgent need to transform and upgrade, improve brand and quality, and become an indispensable link.

German and Japanese tool brands are clearly differentcome from the American ones. Apart from some capital advantages, German and Japanese brands still have 100 years of tradition and history. Family still responsible for more than just the company Many instrument brands in Germany, Japan and Western Europe are still run by families, inheriting the original vision of the century.

Proud and adventurous

The essence of the tools is civilian technology. The gap between us, Europe and the US in this regard is very small, and some of them have even begun to catch up. Ordinary power tool products, such customers must pursue cost-effectiveness, and Chinese companies have the advantages of high quality and low price. In fact, purely local production in the United States is not necessarily better than in China. The products made by Makita in the USA are not as good as those made by Makita in Kunshan, China.

It is said that China is developing rapidly in the world, especially in developing countries, and our industrial system and technological capabilities are constantly improving. With the continuous efforts of various Chinese companies, Chinese brands are also constantly attacking cities. , Continuous movement towards traditional high value-added industries in Europe, America, Japan and South Korea. This is something that most countries are not capable of. Over the years, most of them stagnated or even regressed.

If I hadn't been involved in the foreign business of independent tool manufacturers in the past few years, I might not have been able to appreciate this sense of pride, and I am even more proud that our country is developing in the right direction. direction.

But it is a fact that we are making great strides, and it is also a fact that our brand exports are still hovering at a low level.

We also saw in the Stanley and Makita examples mentioned above that, globally, Europe and the United States were the first to eat a significant portion of the pie, followed by Japan and then China. On the one hand, we need to keep developing, but on the other hand, the OEM ceiling is very clear, which requires us to jump beyond the OEM and look for new opportunities in the brand area. We have moved from a former overseas OEM to a more sophisticated overseas brand, so we need to start thinking more about how to tailor the brand and products to local political, cultural, and realistic grounds.