Milestones

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

General historical events

Kokubu's history

1702
    • Lord Kira assassinated by a band of 47 ronin (Chushingura incident)
1712
    • 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.
    • The wise Ooka Tadasuke appointed as town magistrate of Edo
1756
    • 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.
    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
1853
    • A squadron of four ships arrives at Uraga Bay under the command of Commodore Perry
1859
    • Kanbei Kokubu VIII starts tea trading
1868
    • Meiji Restoration
1880
    • Soy sauce brewery closed; wholesaling business starts in a wide variety of foodstuffs
1885
    • The cabinet system established (Hirobumi Ito becomes the first prime minister)
1887
    • Sales of foodstuffs and canned products start
    • Electric lights installed in Tokyo
1888
    • Sales of beer start
1889
    • Dai-Nippon Teikoku Kenpō(Constitution of the Empire of Japan) was proclaimed.
1894
    • The paulownia mark registered as a trademark
    • Outbreak of Sino-Japanese War
1904
    • Outbreak of Russo-Japanese War
1908
    • K&K registered as the company trademark
1909
    • Sales of AJI-NO-MOTO start. Sales of CALPIS and synthetic sake also start in 1919 and 1926, respectively.
1910
    • Publication of industry newsletter, Kokubu Market Report, starts
    Publication of industry newsletter, Kokubu Market Report, starts
1917
    • Sales of 1.8 liter bottled soy sauce start, using Kokubu bottles
1923
    • Store destroyed in the earthquake; reconstruction work starts immediately; efforts made to supply soy sauce as a daily necessity
    • Great Kanto Earthquake
1928
    • Yokohama Office set up.
1931
    • The first building(The old: Nihombashi headquarters building)was completed.
    The first building(The old: Nihombashi headquarters building)was completed.
1938
    • Osaka Brauch Office established.
1941
    • Battle of the Atlantic broke out.
1945
    • Sapporo Branch Office opened.
    • Pacific War broke out.
1947
    • KOKUBU TSUKEMONO CO., LTD. Established
    • The Constitution of Japan comes into force
1950
    • KOKUBU & Co. and KOKUBU TSUKEMONO CO., LTD. merged to form KOKUBU SHOTEN CO., LTD.
1953
    • Start of TV broadcasting by NHK and private broadcasting companies
1957
    • Fukuoka Contact Office set up.
1961
    • Nagoya Branch Office established.
1962
    • Sendai Branch Office opened.
1964
    • Tokyo Olympic Games held
    • Tokaido Shinkansen launched
1965
    • Computer system introduced (IBM1440)
1967
    • Hiroshima Branch Office set up.
1970
    • Osaka World Exposition held
1971
    • The First Long-Term Management Plan commenced.
    • Company name changed from KOKUBU SHOTEN CO., LTD. to the current name KOKUBU & CO., LTD.
    First Long Term Business Plan
1973
    • Switch to a floating exchange rate for the yen
    • The first oil crisis
1975
    • Construction of the headquarters building completed (current Nihombashi headquarters building)
1978
    • KOKUBU GROCERS CHAIN (KGC), a convenience store chain, launched
    KOKUBU GROCERS CHAIN (KGC), a convenience store chain, launched
1981
    • Own physical distribution of chilled food products starts
1982
    • The First Food Distribution Study Group Meeting held
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
1994
    • The 3OD (One Order, One Delivery) System constructed as a logistics system for consolidated ordering/delivery operations
1995
    • Introduced a company-wide E-mail.
    • Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake
1999
    • Information system KOMPASS launched across the Kokubu Group
2000
    • Annual sales figure for KOKUBU & CO., LTD. (excluding group companies) surpasses one trillion yen (about $13 billion *)
    • Long-term Care Insurance System introduced
2001
    • Confection wholesale business starts toward the goal of constructing a full-line setup
    • 9/11 terrorist attacks
2002
    • To celebrate its 290th anniversary, Kokubu introduces "Heisei no Chomoku," a new Kokubu Credo (serving as both an action charter and a behavioral code)
    To celebrate its 290th anniversary, Kokubu introduces 'Heisei no Chomoku,' a new Kokubu Credo (serving as both an action charter and a behavioral code)
    • 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
2005
    • 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
    • The Kyoto Protocol for the prevention of global warming enters into force
2006
    • KMS, a business and accounting system, installed for business process standardization throughout the Kokubu Group
2007
    • 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
2008
    • 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
    • The collapse of Lehman Brothers causes a world-wide financial and economic crisis
2010
    • 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.
    • China's GDP ranks second in the world, surpassing Japan
2011
    • 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
    • Great East Japan Earthquake
2012
    • Kokubu marks its 300th anniversary,
      Kokubu marks its 300th anniversary,
    • and launches a new brand “tabete” Distribution Center established in Misato, Saitama Prefec ture and Fujisawa, Kanagawa Prefecture
    • Grouped Huong Thuy Manufacture Service Trading Corporation in 2012, and started the wholesale business in Vietnam.
2013
    • 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, People?s Republic of China) Food Service Operation Center established in Misato, Saitama Prefecture
    • Alliance formed with Yoma Strategic Holdings, Ltd., (Myanmar) for the refrigerated logistics business.
    • KOKUBU TRADING SHANGHAI CO., LTD. established in Shanghai, China.
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.
    • Consumption tax up to 8%.
2016
    • 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.
    • Established a joint venture between Texchem Restaurant Systems(Malaysia) in 2016 to develop low temperature food logistics business in Malaysia.
    • Established Shanghai Welstory Food Co., Ltd in 2016, and took part in food service and catering industry in China.
    • Kumamoto earthquakes.
2017
    • Representative Director Chairman, and CEO: Kanbei Kokubu
    • Representative Director President and COO: Akira Kokubu Started a new system.
    • Combine Finance & Accounting Division of Kokubu Group Corp and Kokubu Business Support Administrative Center Division to establish Kokubu Business Expert Corp.
    • Focal Marketing Sdn.Bhd., a wholesaler in Malaysia, became an affiliated company.
2018
    • Alliancing capital and business with Ryuseki Co., Ltd, Ryuseki Teionryutsu Corp., which develops the low-temperature food logistics business, was made into a subsidiary.
    • Change the shelf life shown as YYYY/MM/DD of K&K Brand products into YYYY/MM.
    • Acquired all shares of Maruya Co., Ltd., holding the intermediate wholesaler license, and changed the company name into Kokubu Fresh Link Co., Ltd. The business of Best Foods Ota Co., Ltd. was integrated.
    • Established Commonwealth Kokubu Logistics Pte Ltd, a joint venture with Commonwealth Capital Pte Ltd (Singapore) to develop the low-temperature food logistics business.
    • Heavy rain of July, Heisei 30.
    • 2018 Hokkaido Eastern Iburi earthquake
2019
    • Nouvelles Selections Inc., a wine importer, was made into a subsidiary.
    • Set up Kansai General Center, a large-scale triple-temperature zone distribution center.
    • onsumption tax up to 10%
    • Typhoon Hagibis
    • New emperor enthronement
2020
    • Implemented Open Innovation Program, Kokubu Group Accelerator 2020.
    • Issued Kokubu SDGs Statement Book.
    • Kokubu Food Logistics Malaysia operates four temperature zone distribution center in the suburbs of Kuala Lumpur.
    • Strengthern the functions of the purchasing type crowdfunding site Future Key Points of Foods & Liquors, and develop it as a Regional Revitalization Platform for Foods to support the local production for non-local consumptions of the local manufacturers affected by COVID-19.
    • Outbreak of COVID-19.
    • The Olympic postponed to next year.
    • Enforcement of Revision of Liquor Tax Act.