Steel: Nucor, Tokyo Steel, Nippon Steel
Although steel no longer plays as big a part as it used to in today's global economy, it remains a fundamental yet very heterogeneous commodity as it comes in several different types and its production involves a number of diverse processes. The quality of the material is thus dictated by the equipment it has been processed on, the people who deal with the material, and the process control. This chapter looks into the situation of three companies: 1) Tokyo Steel Manufacturing Co., a Japanese Level 2 IT user; 2) Nucor Corp., a Level 2 IT user from the U.S.; and 3) Nippon Steel, a Level 3 IT user from Japan. This chapter provides an overview of the industry in a Japanese setting and in a global setting, and studies the strategies and roles the IT plays for the three firms.
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