CHAPTER 2

THE BATTLEFIELD

The Home Appliance Industry in the West and China

The past three decades of competition within the global major home appliance industry tell a story that is representative of many traditional manufacturing industries: rapid growth of domestic champions in developed markets after the conclusion of World War II, when war-repressed demand could finally be fulfilled; followed a few decades later by a softening of growth as these markets matured and became saturated; leading in turn to a search for emerging markets in the developing world order to sustain growth; fierce international competition and severe consolidation of market players in the foreign markets that were “invaded,” as too many competitors arrived to serve ...

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