Directly investing in foreign carriers was a fairly hefty blunder for NTT DoCoMo. It took big financial losses, and failed to establish i-mode as a global force. But a new president and a new plan have seen things change significantly. Former DoCoMo CEO Keiji Tachikawa led a number of huge investments in overseas carriers like AT&T Wireless and Three in the UK, in hopes of turning the operators into users of its i-mode system. The plan failed, to say the least, costing the company $17 billion in writedowns — a far cry from its runaway success in its home market.
But when Masao Nakamura was installed as CEO, the company took a different course, pulling back from the direct investments and focusing on licensing i-mode to other carriers. Full story here.