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1890
Inabata Senryoten established as importer of dyestuffs in Kyoto
Inabata SenryotenInabata Senryoten
1891
“IK” becomes official company logo
1894
Opening of representative office in Tokyo heralds the first expansion into the Kanto region of an Osaka-based dyestuffs business
Katsutaro Inabata establishes Muslin Boshoku company with other founding membersMuslin Boshoku company – Katsutaro Inabata established Muslin Boshoku with other founding members in Osaka in 1895 to begin domestic production of muslin, a thin and light yet warm wool fabric which at the time was being imported in large quantities for use in women’s kimonos. In 1896, Katsutaro Inabata set off for France on his own initiative to research spinning and weaving technology and purchase machinery and equipment. In France, he researched Muslin production methods before returning to Japan and considered the spinning and weaving machines manufactured by Société Alsacienne de Constructions Mécaniques in France to be the best, which led to business between the two companies.
Tokyo representative officeTokyo representative office
1897
Katsutaro Inabata returns to Japan from France with a cinematograph, the first motion-picture cameraInabata Shoten presents Japan’s first cinema shows – For a period of one week beginning on February 15, 1897, Inabata Shoten presented Japan’s first cinema shows at the Nanchi Enbujo Theater, located in the Namba district of Osaka, using the cinematograph. A newspaper at the time wrote, “The audience was surprised and amazed by the moving picture.” While in France, Katsutaro Inabata attended school together with elder of the Lumiere brothers, the inventors of the cinematograph. Katsutaro met him again while on business in France for Muslin Boshoku Seeing the cinematograph for the first time, Katsutaro decided to bring the invention back to Japan to introduce advances in Western culture to the country.
Inabata Dye House establishedInabata Dye House – Inabata Dye House was established in Osaka in May of 1897 to launch a dye processing business using state-of-the-art techniques. The maroon color developed by Inabata Dye House was called Inabata-zome and was widely used for girls’ school uniforms and “hakama”- style skirts for women from the middle of the Meiji period. In addition, an original khaki color was adopted by the Japanese military forces for camouflage uniforms on the battlefield.
Head office moves to Osaka (current location of the Osaka Head Office). Kyoto location becomes branch office
Osaka Head OfficeOsaka Head Office
1908
Toka Yoko is established in Tianjin, China, which served as Inabata Shoten’s representative office in Tianjin for developing markets (closed in 1922)
1918
The company is incorporated as Inabata Shoten(Inabata & Co., Ltd.)
1922
Osaka hamber of Commerce and Industry appoints Katsutaro Inabata as its 10th president. He remains in the post until 1934
1926
Katsutaro Inabata assumes presidency of The Japan Dyestuff Manufacturing Co., Ltd.The Japan Dyestuff Manufacturing Co., Ltd. – In 1916, The Japan Dyestuff Manufacturing Co., Ltd. (Nippon Senryo Seizo company) was established with the aim of encouraging the domestic production of synthetic dyes since Japan relied heavily on imports of the product at the time. Katsutaro Inabata was involved in the establishment of this company, becoming the firm’s auditor and then president. The company would later be privatized, and, through aggressive management, contributed to the proliferation of domestic dyes. In addition, the company expanded operations to include chemicals and pharmaceuticals. However, as a result of national policies related to World War II, Japan Dyestuff merged with Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd. in July of 1944. Even after the merger, all special business agreements with Inabata remained unchanged. As a result, Inabata became the specified agent of Sumitomo Chemical for products produced by Japan Dyestuff prior to the merger. This marked the beginning of the close relationship between Sumitomo Chemical and Inabata.
1930
Representative office opens in Nagoya
New Tokyo branch office completed (the original office building was destroyed by fire during the Great Kanto Earthquake)
1935
Ownership of Inabata Dye House transferred to Toyobo Co., Ltd.
1937
Taro Inabata becomes the second president of Inabata
Representative office opens in Brussels
1939
Representative offices open in Shanghai and Tianjin (China)
1940
Representative offices open in Batavia (now Jakarta, Indonesia), Seoul (Korea), and Qingdao and Fengtian (China)
1943
“Inabata Sangyo” becomes the Japanese company name.
Representative office opens in Yogyakarta
1944
Nippon Senryo merges into Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd.
Inabata & Co., Ltd. becomes exclusive distributor of dyestuffs, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals for Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd.
Next 1945 - 1990