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Yakult brushes aside claims that poor management led to Yakult Argentina dissolution

By Mark Astley , 14-Jan-2013

Yakult has brushed aside claims by a number of former employees that its Argentinian business was dissolved as a result of poor management in recent years.

The Japan-based company announced the dissolution of Yakult Argentina S.A. in November 2012 after 15 years operating in the country. Announcing the dismantlement, Yakult cited the problems encountered establishing a “sufficient business foundation.”

In December 2012, a number of former employees of Yakult Argentina set up a Facebook page to outline their version of events.

On the page, Motivos reales de la Liquidacion Empresa Yakult Argentina S.A (Real reasons for the liquidation of Yakult Argentina S.A), the workers claim that the dismantlement of Yakult Argentina S.A. came as a result of bad management in recent years.

Speaking with DairyReporter.com, a Yakult spokesperson sidestepped the claims, describing them as “isolated comments.”

“Isolated comments”

“These are isolated comments which do not reflect the economic and financial rationale that led Yakult to withdraw from the business in Argentina,” said the spokesperson.

“We have come to this decision considering the past performance of the business, limited prospect of recovery, and the current environment overall.”

“Yakult Argentina S.A. started sales of ‘Yakult’ in May 1997, with the aim of promoting probiotics to contribute to the health of people. However, since it has not been possible to establish a sufficient business foundation in Argentina and we do not see any prospects for profitability, we have decided to dissolve the company,” said the spokesperson.

When pressed on why former employees of the Argentinian business would make such comments, Yakult reiterated its earlier response.

“These are isolated comments which do not reflect the economic and financial rationale that led Yakult to withdraw from the business in Argentina,” the spokesperson added.

“Effectiveness” of work questioned

In their statement, dated 10 December 2012, the former employees praised the initial management of Yakult Argentina, pointing to their “great forward-looking approach in matters of publicity.”

The statement goes on to say that things began to go downhill when executives from Yakult Mexico were drafted in to assist in the management of the company.

The statement adds that the executives were asked to return to Mexico after they were unable to demonstrate the “effectiveness of their work.”

Speaking with DairyReporter.com, an administrator of the Facebook page outlined the reasons behind the statement.

“This page was made by workers who lost their jobs. Our only intention was to clarify the causes, as the senior staff at Yakult Argentina always blame the workers,” said an administrator of the page.

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