Hoshi Ryokan: The World’s Oldest Family Firm and the First Female Succession in 1,305 years

Published 06 Jul 2023
Reference 6831
Region Asia
Length 8 page(s)
Language English

The case is about the Hoshi Ryokan, a hot springs hotel in Japan established more than 1,300 years ago, that is among the world’s oldest family enterprises. Owned and managed by a descendant (or adopted son) of the founder for 46 generations, it is a popular with domestic and international tourists alike. The current owner will almost certainly pass the baton to his daughter, thus making her the first female to own the legendary inn. This gender re-balancing act, coming after 1,305 years of male ownership, coincides with efforts by the prime minister of Japan to create a more balanced and diverse business climate. The case also covers the intangible assets that have ensured the longevity of this unique family-owned hotel.

Teaching objectives

For instructors interested in gender issues, the case describes an unusual female succession in an industry and country that are embracing diversity. In addition, it explores to themes related to family business such as longevity and the intangible family assets that underpin it.

  • Hoshi
  • Hotel
  • Onsen
  • Henokiens
  • Adult Adoption
  • Buddhism
  • Mount Hakusan
  • Ryokan
  • Hot Springs
  • Succession
  • Zengoro Hoshi
  • Longevity
  • Awazu
  • Hokuriku
  • Q32023