CJ Builds Revenue by Building Culture
A company that started from manufacturing sugar has come a long way but kept its sweetness!
For a long time CJ Group has manufactured and sold ingredients such as salt, soy sauce, gochujang (pepper paste)… basically all of the ingredients that you need to cook delicious Korean meals. While it was successful as a food ingredient company, it acknowledged the importance of food and culture and decided to expand its business and really start cooking.
The first step was food and CJ Group opened multiple restaurants, covering cuisines from Asia and the west. Their Korean restaurants range from authentic to fusion and their foreign brands all have foods that suit the Korean palate.
Recently, to promote their restaurants together, the company opened CJ Foodworld near Dongdaemun History & Culture Park in Seoul. At CJ Foodworld, you can check out all the deliciousness that the company offers. It is a hot place for tourists because of the variety foods and (just as importantly) because it is known as a Korean celebrity hangout!
The second component in CJ’s plan for world domination was entertainment. CJ Group took a clever approach and started a movie chain called CGV, which is now it’s Korea’s most popular movie theater chain. The company also created a music-focused cable channel called Mnet. With the addition of Mnet.com, CJ is helping to introduce K-pop beyond Korea. Home CGV, another cable channel, shows popular syndicated TV shows and movies 24-hours-a-day.
The third component was globalizing a formula that worked in Korea. With its entertainment business combined with food, CJ Group leads the K-pop, Korean movie and Korean food fever globally. Bibigo, one of CJ’s food brands that focuses on healthy Korean food, is capturing the hearts of people outside of Korea.
To spur further innovation internally, CGV is scrapping its seniority-based system for promoting employees and instead quickly promoting employees who show special talent. This is almost unheard of within a large Korean conglomerate.