Meiji was the reign name of the emperor of Japan from 1867-1912 whose given name was Mutsoshito. The Meiji restoration occured shortly after his ascension in 1868 and essentially put down the old feudal system based in Kyoto and created a central authority in Tokyo which fostered in the modern industrial era.
You might also be able to generalize a zaibatsu to any family owned business. But, then again, is a family-owned farm, cigar store a zaibatsu?
You may hear WilliamGibson mumble something about zaibatsus in NeuromancerBook.
A lot of people who have read Gibson use the term zaibatsu mistakingly to mean any transnational megacorporation. However, this abuse is prevalent; I wonder if the word has taken on new meaning in English culture. Then again, only a handful people use the term, which means it officially has no meaning in English.
But does the word only have meaning if x number of people speak it? Or does it have meaning when y number of people would recognize the meaning? What I'm getting at is that many more people will recognize the meaning of a word than will actually use it as part of their working vocabulary. zaibatsu is not part of my working vocabulary, but I would unhesitatingly assign it the Gibsonian meaning of a transnational megacorporation; implies Japanese origin and attempts to control the lives of its employees.
It's much easier to count the number of people who speak a word, so I can see that standard arising. I just don't think it's right.