Company Information

Milestones

Kokubu's 300 years of progress are the very history of Japanese dietary life.

Kokubu's history   General historical events
  1702
  • Lord Kira assassinated by a band of 47 ronin (Chushingura incident)
  • Founding of the KOKUBU GROUP CORP.
  • Kanbei Kokubu IV opens retail store Daikokuya in Edo Nihombashi and launches a soy sauce brewing operation to supplement involvement in the kimono fabrics trade at this time.
1712  
  1717
  • The wise Ooka Tadasuke appointed as town magistrate of Edo
  • Kanbei Kokubu V moves the Nihombashi Honcho store to Nihombashi Nishigashi.
  • Soy sauce products brewed at the Tsuchiura plant were labeled with the logo "Kikkodai" consisting of a hexagon with a Chinese character meaning "big" at its center.
    logo "Kikkodai"
1756  
  1774
  • The Dutch book "Anatomical Tables" translated by Sugita Genpaku, Maeno Ryotaku, et al.]
  1853
  • A squadron of four ships arrives at Uraga Bay under the command of Commodore Perry
  • Kanbei Kokubu VIII starts tea trading
1859  
  1868
  • Meiji Restoration
  1872
  • Railway service starts between Shinbashi and Yokohama
  • Soy sauce brewery closed; wholesaling business starts in a wide variety of foodstuffs
1880  
  1885
  • The cabinet system established (Hirobumi Ito becomes the first prime minister)
  • Sales of foodstuffs and canned products start
1887
  • Electric lights installed in Tokyo
  • Sales of beer start
1888  
  • The paulownia mark registered as a trademark
1894
  • Outbreak of Sino-Japanese War
  1904
  • Outbreak of Russo-Japanese War
  1905
  • "I am a Cat" by Natsume Soseki published
  • K&K registered as the company trademark
1908  
  • Sales of AJI-NO-MOTO start. Sales of CALPIS and synthetic sake also start in 1919 and 1926, respectively.
1909  
  • Publication of industry newsletter, Kokubu Market Report, starts
    Photo
1910  
  • Sales of 1.8 liter bottled soy sauce start, using Kokubu bottles
1917  
  • Store destroyed in the earthquake; reconstruction work starts immediately; efforts made to supply soy sauce as a daily necessity
1923
  • Great Kanto Earthquake
  1928  
  1931  
  1938  
  1945
  • End of World War II
  • KOKUBU TSUKEMONO CO., LTD. Established
1947
  • The Constitution of Japan comes into force
  • KOKUBU & Co. and KOKUBU TSUKEMONO CO., LTD. merged to form KOKUBU SHOTEN CO., LTD.
1950  
  1953
  • Start of TV broadcasting by NHK and private broadcasting companies
  1957  
  1961  
  1962  
  1964
  • Tokyo Olympic Games held
  • Tokaido Shinkansen launched
  • Computer system introduced (IBM1440)
1965  
  1967  
  1970
  • Osaka World Exposition held
  • Company name changed from KOKUBU SHOTEN CO., LTD.
  • to the current name KOKUBU & CO., LTD.
    First Long Term Business Plan
1971  
  1973
  • Switch to a floating exchange rate for the yen
  • The first oil crisis
  • Construction of the headquarters building completed (current Nihombashi headquarters building)
1975  
  • KOKUBU GROCERS CHAIN (KGC), a convenience store chain, launched
    KOKUBU GROCERS CHAIN (KGC)
1978  
  • Own physical distribution of chilled food products starts
1981  
  • The First Food Distribution Study Group Meeting held
1982  
  1989
  • A national consumption tax imposed
  • Fall of the Berlin Wall
  1991
  • Collapse of the "bubble economy" and steep increase in the number of bankruptcies
  • The 3OD (One Order, One Delivery) System constructed as a logistics system for consolidated ordering/delivery operations
1994  
  1995
  • Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake
  • Information system KOMPASS launched across the Kokubu Group
1999  
  • Annual sales figure for KOKUBU & CO., LTD. (excluding group companies) surpasses one trillion yen (about $13 billion *)
2000
  • Long-term Care Insurance System introduced
  • Confection wholesale business starts toward the goal of constructing a full-line setup
2001
  • 9/11 terrorist attacks
  • To celebrate its 290th anniversary, Kokubu introduces "Heisei no Chomoku," a new Kokubu Credo (serving as both an action charter and a behavioral code)
    Communication mark
2002
  • The 17th FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan 2002 held
  • The Euro, adopted as single EU currency, goes into circulation
  2004
  • Niigata Chuetsu Earthquake
  • Sumatra Earthquake & Indian Ocean Tsunami
  • Capital increased to 3.5 billion yen
  • The Yashio Distribution Center, the biggest mother ship-type general-purpose center in the greater Tokyo metropolitan area, starts operation in the city of Yashio, Saitama Prefecture
2005
  • The Kyoto Protocol for the prevention of global warming enters into force
  • KMS, a business and accounting system, installed for business process standardization throughout the Kokubu Group
2006  
  • Kokubu enters into business tie-ups with pharmaceutical wholesalers, to bolster the foundation for intermediate distribution in the fields of food products, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and general merchandise
2007  
  • 100th anniversary of the "K&K"
  • trademark Kokubu enters into a business tie-up with a seafood wholesaler to bolster business in the field of processed seafood
2008
  • The collapse of Lehman Brothers causes a world-wide financial and economic crisis
  • Kokubu establishes the joint venture San tong Kokubu Trading (Qingdao) Co., Ltd.
  • to undertake logistics and wholesaling business in China; enters into a business tie-up with Sojitz Corporation in the field of food distribution in Vietnam.
2010
  • China's GDP ranks second in the world, surpassing Japan
  • Kokubu enters into a business tie-up with the largest fruit and vegetable wholesaler in Japan, to bolster business in the field of agricultural products Kokubo opens ROJI Nihombashi on 1st floor of headquarters building
2011
  • Great East Japan Earthquake
  • Kokubu marks its 300th anniversary,
    300th Anniversary mark
    and launches a new brand "tabete" Distribution Center established in Misato, Saitama Prefec ture and Fujisawa, Kanagawa Prefecture
2012  
  • Invests made into QSAI Analysis and Research Center Co., Ltd, an organization specializing in food analysis Business alliance formed with Toyota Tsusho centered around the distribution and international trade of food Acquire ownership of Weifang Sanhui Logistics Ltd. (Shandong Province, Peopleʼs Republic of China) Food Service Operation Center established in Misato, Saitama Prefecture
2013
  • Alliance formed with Yoma Strategic Holdings, Ltd., (Myanmar) for the refrigerated logistics business.
  • KOKUBU TRADING SHANGHAI CO., LTD. established in Shanghai, China.
  • SHANGHAI MINENI FOODS CO, LTD. made a subsidiary of the Group in Shanghai, China.
  • Kokubu Itabashi General-Purpose Center, Kokubu Ibaraki General-Purpose Center, and Kokubu Sendai General-Pur pose Center established as large general-purpose centers capable of accommodating three temperature zones each.
2014  
  • SHANGHAI MINENI FOODS CO, LTD. made a subsidiary of the Group in Shanghai, China. Kokubu Itabashi General-Purpose Center, Kokubu Ibaraki General-Purpose Center, and Kokubu Sendai General-Pur pose Center established as large general-purpose centers capable of accommodating three temperature zones each.
2015  
  • Kokubu's wholesaling operations reorganized into seven area companies, two category companies, and a headquarters company. The headquarters company renamed KOKUBU GROUP CORP. The Food Marketing Company, our tenth long-term management plan, commenced.
2016