Konosuke Matsushita Founded Panasonic
On the 7th of March the founder, Konosuke Matsushita, founded Matsushita Electric Housewares Manufacturing Works in Osaka, Japan. The company began manufacturing wiring equipment. Their workplace consisted of three rooms on the ground floor of a two-story home that they converted into a workshop and equipped with two small hand-operated presses for molding insulation. The small company was started by only three people: the founder, his wife, and his brother-in-law (Toshio Iue -- who later founded Sanyo Electric).
* The image shows a photograph taken the year after the company was founded. (Back row from left: Konosuke, Toshio Iue, Mumeno Matsushita)Corporate History | Panasonic
Launched First Products: Attachment Plug and 2-Way Socket
The founder, Konosuke Matsushita, was convinced that there would be a huge demand from ordinary households for convenient, high-quality wiring products. As a result, the company manufactured and marketed its first products, an attachment plug and 2-way socket. Since homes generally had only a single power outlet for one lamp at the time, a product that allowed the use of two lamps, or a lamp and an iron, was popular.
* The photo shows the company’s first products: an attachment plug (left) and, in 1920, a 2-way socket (right).Corporate History | Panasonic
Established First Head Office and Factory
In February 1920, the founder designed a trademark for the company consisting of the letter M overlaid with an arrow and surrounded by a wide diamond. In March, the company established a representative office in Tokyo. In 1922, the company decided to build a new factory and office, which the founder designed himself. Though the economy worsened, the company continued to grow as sales of its products increased. In the four years since the company's inception, it had become a full-fledged business with its own factory.
* The photo shows the factory around 1924.Panasonic Corporate History
“National Lamp” Marketed as the First Product to Use the National Trademark
In 1925, the founder created the National trademark for a square-shaped lamp that the company had been producing, and for which the trademark rights were granted the following year. The National Lamp, which was the first product to use the National name, was expected to become a daily necessity for people all over the nation, and was launched in 1927. It became extremely popular not only for bicycle use, but as a convenient and safe light source that could be set down or carried about. Sales grew rapidly and the National trademark became synonymous with battery-powered lamps as the product spread all over Japan.Panasonic Corporate History
Established the Electric Heating Department
The founder, Konosuke Matsushita, established the Electric Heating Department because he wanted to produce high-quality electric devices at prices that the ordinary home could afford. With this in mind, development first started on irons. The "Super Iron," which was launched three months later, used a new structure in which the heater was sandwiched between iron plates. Offering the same level of quality as conventional irons, its price was 30% lower. The engineer who developed the "Super Iron," Tetsujiro Nakao, created a wide variety of new technologies and new products as a leader in Panasonic technology.
Established Management Objective and Company Creed
In March of this year, the founder changed the name Matsushita Electric Housewares Manufacturing Works to Matsushita Electric Manufacturing Works. At the same time, the responsibility of the company to society was defined as the ‘Management Objective.’ ‘Finding harmony between profit and social justice, devoting ourselves to the development of national industry, and fostering progress and promoting the general welfare of society.’This has evolved with the growth of the business, but the spirit still lives on in today's Panasonic. Konosuke Matsushita, who had considered the company primarily a private endeavor, changed his management philosophy for the company from merely the pursuit of profit to an enterprise whose purpose is to be a servant of society. The Company Creed was also formulated as follows: ‘Progress and development can be realized only through the combined efforts and cooperation of each employee of our company. United in spirit, we pledge to perform our corporate duties with dedication, diligence and integrity.’Corporate History | PanasonicCode of Conduct | Panasonic
Established a Trade Department and Started the Export Business
In the previous year, 1931, the production of batteries and radios began and the scale of the company expanded dramatically. As a result, the eyes of the founder, Konosuke Matsushita, turned overseas and a foreign trade department was established in April 1932 in line with the founder’s idea that the company would “make and export things itself.” Panasonic’s overseas business began with the export of wiring fixtures, lamps, and dry cell batteries, mainly to China. At this time, Japan’s overseas trading was done only by trading companies and foreign freight companies so the establishment of a manufacturer controlling its own exports was ground-breaking.
The Founder, Konosuke Matsushita Announced the True Mission of the Company
Konosuke started thinking deeply about the mission of producers as a result of observing a religious organization. And at the Central Electric Club on May 5, his company's true mission was announced to all 168 employees: "Even though water from a tap is a processed product with a price, no one objects if a passerby drinks from a roadside tap. That is because the supply of water is plentiful and its price is low. The mission of a manufacturer is to create material abundance by providing goods as plentiful and inexpensive as tap water." We can overcome people's poverty and enrich society by providing products more cheaply. This way of thinking was called the "water philosophy" and became famous as a leading idea for the company. Konosuke then announced a 250-year plan for the company to fulfill its mission. The loftiness of the mission and boldness of the plan were deeply felt by all of the employees, and filled the hall with excitement. Konosuke set that day as the "founding anniversary" because that was when everyone knew the true mission of the company, and deemed 1932 to be the "first year of the true mission enlightenment."
* The photo shows the true founding anniversary celebration at the Central Electric Club in Osaka.Corporate History | Panasonic
Purchased the Rights to Radio Patents and Released Them to the Public Domain
At the time, radio manufacturers, including the company, were in a difficult position because the use of multi－pole vacuum tube high－frequency circuits would infringe on the inventor's patents. For this reason, the founder purchased the patents in October of this year. He then released them to the public free of charge so other manufacturers could use them. This greatly helped to advance the radio industry as a whole, bringing widespread praise and appreciation to the company.Corporate History | Panasonic
Moved the Head Office and Created the Business Divisional System
The company, which couldn’t fulfill all of its orders even at full production, bought a site of 70,000 square meters northeast of Osaka in suburban Kadoma. A new head office and rows of factories were constructed and the core of the business was moved to the new site. In May of that same year, the founder, Konosuke Matsushita decided to make each enterprise responsible for the products they produced. Due to this reorganization, each business division had a factory and a branch office in its domain, and was responsible for managing its factories and offices, developing, manufacturing and selling products, and maintaining profitable operations with an independent accounting system.
* The photo shows Konosuke explaining explains the business divisional system.Panasonic Corporate History
Opened the Employee Training Institute
The founder, Konosuke Matsushita, firmly believed that "Business depends on people." He stressed the importance of "creating people before creating products." As such, he placed special emphasis on training. In line with this, the Employee Training Institute was established this year. The purpose of this institute was for elementary school graduates to attain the same level of academic ability as a 5-year secondary school while completing both business and industrial courses and graduating in just three years. Upon graduation, employees could immediately assume positions in a company.Panasonic Corporate History
Pricing Policy Based on Co-Existence and Mutual Prosperity Philosophy
Matsushita devoted his energies to offering products of high quality at prices the average household could afford. He believed that selling products at a fair profit would contribute to the stability of both the manufacturer and the retailer, would simplify consumers' purchasing decisions, and would restore consumer trust in retail pricing policies. For this reason, he instituted a fair price policy in line with his philosophy of co-existence and mutual prosperity-"fair price" meaning appropriate price rather than fixed price. The Matsushita Retailers Association was formed to advance Matsushita's co-existence and mutual prosperity philosophy.Corporate History | Panasonic
Established Matsushita Electric Trading
During the period when Japan's electronics industry still depended mainly on trading companies for overseas trade, Matsushita Electric Trading was already established to promote exports and expand sales routes throughout Southeast Asia. This was based on the philosophy of co-existence and mutual prosperity.Panasonic Corporate History
Reorganized as Matsushita Electric Industrial
The company was employing about 3,500 people and annual sales had reached the ¥12 million mark. The company produced about 600 different products, and its sales network extended abroad. It had become a major force in the electrical appliance industry. In December 1935, the founder, Konosuke Matsushita, incorporated the company as Matsushita Electric Manufacturing Works, which had been a sole proprietorship, and renamed it Matsushita Electric Industrial. to bring it in line with his vision of the enterprise as something entrusted to his care by society. The autonomous divisions were reorganized as nine subsidiaries and four associated companies, with MEI as a holding company.Panasonic Corporate History
Opened Manila Representative Office
In parallel with the promotion of exports, the construction of overseas sales bases progressed and expanded. There were new buildings, a branch office, and a representative office in Manila. By 1937, six overseas bases were opened, and efforts turned toward creating markets.
Established National Storage Battery
Foreseeing the future demand for car batteries, the founder, Konosuke Matsushita, who had already begun researching the new product, had discussed entering the storage battery business with collaborative partners in 1934, the year before. In 1935, National Storage Battery was established. This was the beginning of the Panasonic storage battery operation.
Started a 6-day Work Week
The company changed from a twice-monthly holiday system to weekly holidays. The founder, Konosuke Matsushita, deeply considered holidays from the viewpoint of a leader wanting effective worker training while also taking his worker’s health and well-being into consideration. He recommended that two of the four weekly holidays be used for leisure, and the other two for self-study.
Three Executives Are Dispatched to Europe and the US for Initial Observations
The founder, Konosuke Matsushita, dispatched three executives led by Tetsujiro Nakao, later a Senior Technical Adviser, for the company's first observational tours of Europe and the U.S. In Europe, the executives visited Germany, the U.K., France, and the Netherlands among other countries. The tour included visits to Siemens and other factories. This tour paved the way for the start of Panasonic's relationship with Europe.
Import Department Established for Importing Materials
An import department was created in Matsushita Electric Trading, which had been mainly engaged in the export business. Raw materials were imported based on the material requirements for Panasonic and the electronics industry.
Dispatched Employee to Mexico as the Company’s First Representative in Latin America
Panasonic dispatched an employee to Mexico, which was a large market for wiring equipment at the time, making him the company’s first representative in Latin America.
Communicating the "3 Rules"
As the military gained strength within Japan during WWII, the company was required to support its core business of producing electrical equipment by cooperating with the country's production of military equipment in order to survive as a company. However, to prevent the company from losing sight of its main goal and falling into a condition of lax management, he communicated what came to be called the "3 Rules" throughout the company: "the rules of management," "the rules of finance," and "the rules of employee leadership and the rules of individuality." The 3 Rules brought awareness to all of the employees with the following call, "Whether it is management, or marketing, we shall be transparent and open rather than personal and closed."
The First Management Policy Announcement
WWII broke out in September of the previous year, and as Japan reinforced its wartime structure, major limitations were placed on civilian production. Against this backdrop, the company held the first Management Policy Announcement. In that announcement, the founder emphasized that "we must cooperate with all of our strength in pursuing national polices, but in consideration of the general public, our company's traditional peacetime industry is also of vital importance." Since then, the Management Policy Announcement has been held each year on January 10th, to map out the year's concrete policies.The Founder, Konosuke Matsushita
Advocating a General Mobilization for High-Quality Production
Even as Japan reinforced its wartime structure, the founder, Konosuke Matsushita, expressed the need to support civilian production for the sake of the consumer, and for the company's agents and retail stores. However, since quality problems could be expected from the design simplification measures that were taken in response to price controls and the need to use alternative materials due to restrictions on the use of natural resources, Konosuke Matsushita advocated a General Mobilization for High-Quality Production in August of this year. As part of this, he called for the production of quality goods that met consumer needs in every respect, and a reduction of defects. This clearly moved all of the employees to action.
* The photo shows the factory at the present time
Reviving Consumer Demand
Learning of the war's end on August 15th, the founder called the company's executives to a meeting in the auditorium the following day, having decided that "this was the time to bring all of the employees together in a unified force to revive consumer demand." He expressed a clear policy to restore consumer demand immediately. Furthermore, he sent a communication to all employees on August 20th, stating, "Production is the key to revival. Let us arouse the traditional Matsushita Electric spirit to work toward the nation's restoration and our cultural enhancement." This encouragement helped to speed up the preparations for production. The founder then requested approval to lift the order to halt production that had been enacted by the GHQ to halt the military industry. Starting with radio production in the middle of September, production approval was given for a variety of products, and by the middle of October, all workshops were engaging in production.
* The photo shows the radio factory, which started production shortly after the war's end.
Established Product Inspection Site
The founder, Konosuke Matsushita, pointed out a major technical improvement policy at a Management Policy Presentation Meeting in January of 1946, which combined higher wages, higher efficiency, and more specialized segmentation as his immediate goals. “Matsushita's products in the minds of the masses are number one in popularity and practicality, but we also need to be the best in Japan in terms of quality.” Konosuke established a product inspection site to improve quality and concurrently served as its director. The site would only release products to the market that had passed stringent examinations.
Facing the Risk of Dissolution
At the end of WWII, Panasonic immediately resumed production for civilian use. However, at the beginning of this year, the policy of the General Headquarters (GHQ) became increasingly strict. In March, the company was designated as a restricted concern and all of its assets were frozen. In 1948, Panasonic was placed under seven restrictions purging it from public service, and at one point faced the possibility of dissolution. In response to this, the founder, Konosuke Matsushita strongly resisted for the next four years that the company's business would be "to produce and market only items that people require for a peaceful lifestyle." As a result, most of the restrictions were lifted in the latter half of 1950 and the company avoided the risk of being dissolved.Corporate History | PanasonicPanasonic narrowly avoids zaibatsu designation
The Founder, Konosuke Matsushita Made His First Visit to Europe
Strongly feeling the need to manage from a global viewpoint, Konosuke visited the U.S. in October of this year. He followed with visits to 4 European countries: the Netherlands, Germany, France, and the U.K. Until his return to Japan in December of the same year, he toured factories and other facilities in each country, and sought technical and business tie-ups with prominent corporations leading the electronics industry in Europe and the U.S.
* The photo shows Konosuke on an airplane headed for an observational tour of Europe and the U.S.
Established a One-Country, One-Operation System
Tapping on the company's know-how of sales, networking channels and marketing activities that were acquired from operating in its domestic (Japanese) market, Panasonic applied the same principles to the Southeast Asian market. In essence a one-country, one-operation system was adopted.
Capital Tie-up with Nakagawa Electric Company (Later Matsushita Refrigeration Company)
Electric refrigerators, which were expected to be the third largest electric appliance after television and radio, were being developed for scheduled release in 1953. However, this year, following the war, there was a request to participate in the Panasonic Group from Nakagawa Electric Company, which had successfully produced and sold refrigerators for use by the Occupation Forces. To avoid double investment and to utilize the technology and experience of Nakagawa Electric Company, they were welcomed into the Group as a subsidiary and placed in charge of producing refrigerators and other refrigeration equipment.
The photo shows Panasonic's first refrigerator "NR-351," released in 1953.Innovative Product: Electric refrigerator
Established Matsushita Electronics Corporation from Technical Tie-up with Philips
Panasonic had a business relationship with the Dutch company Philips before WWII, and Philips contacted Panasonic after the war to request a continuation of their business relation. A technological and capital alliance with Philips was thus born in October of this year as a subsidiary named Matsushita Electronics Corporation. The CEO of Philips said that it was not just a matter of "giving technical assistance and receiving a technical assistance fee" but expressed this partnership as a "marriage" of both companies.Corporate History | Panasonic
Opened a New York Branch
In order to investigate overseas technologies and market trends as well as create a base for overseas expansion, the founder, Konosuke Matsushita opened the Matsushita Electric New York Office in October based on hopes that he developed during his first visit to the U.S. in 1951. In 1954, 20,000 vacuum tube type portable radios were exported to the U.S.
* The photo shows Konosuke in New York.
Established the Central Research Laboratory
The company began strengthening its R&D capabilities and modernizing its production equipment with the creation of the Central Research Laboratory in Osaka in 1953. The laboratory conducted basic research and assisted various divisions in developing new products, while also conducting R&D on equipment and techniques for automated production. It was a comprehensive research facility that combined specialized machine manufacturing with a section for teaching product design research to become a driving force of the new electronic era.
* The photo shows the Central Research Laboratory.Corporate History | Panasonic
Employees Dispatched to Latin America to Promote Technical Assistance
Starting this year, company employees were dispatched to Latin America to actively provide technical assistance. However, the export business failed to meet expectations due to import bans based on problems such as the local shortage of foreign currency. So it became necessary to switch from the conventional export of finished products to local production and the use of local capital.
Capital Tie-up with JVC and Reorganization of JVC as a Subsidiary
Japanese Victor Corporation (JVC) became unprofitable after WWII, so its bank asked Panasonic to restructure JVC management. The founder, Konosuke Matsushita sent two managers in and they began to rebuild the company with Kichisaburo Nomura, former Ambassador to the United States, as president. Although JVC created products like electric gramophones and televisions that competed with Panasonic models, the founder, Konosuke believed that fair competition contributes to social progress and brings prosperity so he allowed them to continue while JVC was restructured.
Launched the "National Hyper," Japan's First Fully Metal-Jacketed Dry Cell Battery
The founder, Konosuke Matsushita, who wanted to manufacture dry cell batteries and other products that met or exceeded world standards, considered technical tie-ups with foreign manufacturers but was persuaded by company engineers to develop products with the company's own strength, and decided to develop them in-house. The company succeeded in developing and launching the "National Hyper," Japan's first fully metal-jacketed dry cell battery.
Panasonic Trademark Used for the First Time
The Panasonic trademark was first used for North American export speakers. Combining the prefix pan (wide/all) and sonic (sound), the notion was that the sounds created are heard throughout the world.
Began Business with Iran and Kuwait Agencies
Following the WWII, Panasonic’s entry into Middle Eastern markets was relatively fast, even though there were few products geared for the electrical appliance market in 1952. Panasonic began dealing with miscellaneous goods using zinc plates, wiring, insulators, and vacuum bottles produced by other manufacturers. The company also began developing export products, such as irons, fans, and portable radios with vacuum tubes. This year, reliable agents were selected from Iran, Iraq, Kuwait and Bahrain, and business began.
Established Kyushu Matsushita Electric
At around this time, Panasonic was entering a large number of new fields by dividing into specialized areas. On the other hand, upon request by its subcontractors and other related companies, Panasonic accepted many of them as subsidiaries, rebuilt their business, reorganized their operations, and entered new business fields with them. During this period the Panasonic Group achieved considerable growth.Kyushu Matsushita Electric, which was established in Fukuoka City as a subsidiary, was strongly requested by the local community to buy an unused factory and use it as a specialized plant to manufacture finished products. The factory began by producing motors and transformers, then expanded its production fields to electric pencil sharpeners and dehydrators, then undertook home pump production from the Pump Department, and eventually produced radios and TVs.
* In 2003, a reorganization and consolidation with Matsushita Graphic Communication Systems and other departments of Group Companies resulted in the formation of Panasonic Communications. Then, in 2010, it was again reorganized and consolidated together with System Solutions to form Panasonic System Networks.
Technical Collaboration with Mallory
Panasonic entered into a technical partnership with P.R. Mallory (currently Duracell), which was known for its development of mercury cell batteries. In 1965, National Mallory Battery was established as a joint venture between the two companies, and Panasonic’s first alkaline dry cell battery went on sale in 1967 as National Mallory Alkaline Batteries.
* The photo shows the Panasonic/Mallory joint stockholders meeting at which the founder, Konosuke Matsushita signed the joint venture agreement.
KDK Kawakita Electric Joined the Matsushita Group
Immediately after Panasonic was founded, KDK Kawakita began placing orders with the company for electric fan insulation plates. Soon after, the Osaka Manufacturing Works of KDK Kawakita broke away, became an independent company, and joined the Matsushita Group In 1962, the company changed its name to Matsushita Seiko. Its operations were guided by the key words "Wind and Air." In 2003, the company changed its name to Matsushita Eco Systems, and in 2008, it changed its name again, to Panasonic Eco Systems, as it remains today.
Surveyed Major African Markets
Market surveys were conducted for a period of about six months in Africa’s major markets, and business with local companies in Nigeria began. A special battery-powered radio model, the BT-152, was developed to meet local needs. This product was popular in the market and led to a major export achievement.
Mr. Gobel, an Indonesian Entrepreneur and Diet Member, Visited the Founder, Konosuke Matsushita
Indonesian President Sukarno, who believed that the spread of radios was an important measure toward unifying Indonesia, dispatched a team that included Mr. Mohammad Gobel, an entrepreneur, to procure radio kits from Japan.With his previous contribution, Mr. Gobel then got an opportunity to meet Konosuke and shared his thoughts on Indonesian trends, politics, economics and independence. He showed his devotion to these subjects. After their conversation, Konosuke accepted a business deal with Mr. Gobel's company, although it was small transaction.In 1960, Panasonic concluded a technical assistance contract with Mr. Gobel's company, which later led to the establishment of a joint venture.
Established Matsushita Communication Industrial
Panasonic split the communication device division into a separate entity to establish Matsushita Communication Industrial. This company built a new factory in Yokohama in 1960, and newly entered the field of electronic application devices. The Tape Recorder Department, which was based in the Kadoma Factory, was further divided to form the Panasonic Recorder Division.
Matsushita Electronics Corporation Received the Deming Prize
In the latter half of the 1950s, Panasonic set up automated factories one after another, and began the full-scale mass production of various new product lines. The Takatsuki Plant of Matsushita Electronics Corporation, the top of the group of factories, attracted the attention of various fields as a symbol of the new electronics era, and received the world renowned Deming Prize, which is awarded to companies with excellent quality control.
* The photo shows a medal of the Deming Prize.
Established Matsushita Electric Corporation of America
In order to build a unique sales network overseas and to have a base for spreading the company's products, the existing New York Branch Office was strengthened to establish the company's first overseas sales company, Matsushita Electric Corporation of America.
* The photo shows the employees of Matsushita Electric Corporation of America at a party in 1965.
Dispatched Employees to Europe for the First Time
While building and achieving rapid development after WWII, Panasonic’s next objective was to become a global company that contributes to the growth and improvement of lives in countries around the world. To achieve this goal, Panasonic employees were dispatched to Europe, where post-war economic development was slowly progressing.
The Founder, Konosuke Matsushita Became Chairman and Masaharu Matsushita Assumed the Presidency
In January 1961, after outlining the annual management policy, Konosuke announced his resignation as president. "With everyone's cooperation, last year we achieved the aims of our five-year plan, and celebrated my 65th birthday. I have decided that the time is right for me to resign as president, and as chairman of the board, to take a back-seat, so to speak, in the company's management. My retirement comes at a turning point in the development of the company, but I believe that our company will make great strides under its new management."Those in attendance were stunned at the announcement. Nonetheless, with Masaharu Matsushita as president, the company reunited its efforts to achieve its corporate mission, and entered a new phase of activity. Konosuke also took this as an occasion to restart the PHP research that had been interrupted since 1950, at Shinshin-an in Kyoto.
* The photo shows a ceremony for newly appointed executives attended by Konosuke (at the far right), who was chairman at the time, and President Masaharu Matsushita (2nd from the right).Corporate History | Panasonic
Established the National Thai Manufacturing Company
With the establishment of the National Thai Manufacturing Company, this year marked the beginning of the company's export activities, technical assistance for overseas countries, and the active construction of overseas factories. It also began the local production of dry cell batteries. This move was aligned with the company's policy of "thinking from a global viewpoint, and proceeding to work with the entire world in your scope."
Established Matsushita Electric Hamburg as Panasonic's First European Sales Company
In 1959, Panasonic dispatched employees to Europe to conduct market research. In order to compete equally with local manufacturers, it was necessary to have product inventory nearby and a quick delivery system. In 1962, Panasonic's first European sales company, Matsushita Electric Hamburg, was established as a system for delivering goods to various parts of Europe using Hamburg's free trade port.
* The photo shows the office of Matsushita Electric Hamburg at the time it was established.
Established Matsushita Electric (Taiwan)
Matsushita Electric (Taiwan) was established by capital participation with a local subsidiary that was producing and selling radios while receiving technical assistance from Panasonic. The aim of meeting three goals was promised to the Taiwanese government: to be self-supporting as a Taiwanese company by local staff; to manufacture products that are recognized as 1st-grade products in international markets; and to not require Japan's assistance with regard to technology or capital. Following this establishment, the demand for Panasonic products rapidly increased. Within only 4 to 5 years, the products handled by this company grew to include everything from TVs to rice cookers, refrigerators, washing machines, and even electronic components.
Moved the Office of Matsushita Electric Industrial Company of America to the Pan Am Building
Matsushita Electric Corporation of America was relocated to the 29th floor of the Pan Am Building in Manhattan, New York.
* The photo shows the Pan Am Building (currently the MetLife Building) in Manhattan, New York.
Established a Representative Office for Matsushita Electric Trading in Panama
Matsushita Electric Trading established a representative office in Panama. In addition to promoting market research, the office worked to examine the possibility of local production and to search for suitable partners. As a result, it was determined that the dry cell battery market showed future promise. It was decided to proceed with development in Peru, Costa Rica, and Brazil, which allowed companies to enter the market with 100% foreign capital.
Held the "Atami Conference" by Gathering Dealers and Agencies from All Over Japan
As a reaction to the initial economic boom in this year, Panasonic’s revenue and earnings dropped considerably in November 1950, which marked the second half of the fiscal year. Due to poor sales, dealers and distributors also plummeted into deficit management. In order to overcome this situation, the founder, Konosuke Matsushita, held a conference in July and invited the presidents of sales companies and agencies all over Japan.The meeting was heated as many complaints and requests were put forth from dealers and distributors. On the third day of the conference, Konosuke reflected and stated, “There is no other way to break through the crisis than by frankly asking ourselves and our counterparts to change for the better.” The venue became quiet and mutually pledged their efforts and cooperation.Corporate History | Panasonic
Established National Mallory Battery in the US
Panasonic cooperated with P.R. Mallory (currently Duracell) and founded National Mallory Battery. In 1967, Panasonic released its first alkaline dry cell as the "National Mallory alkaline dry battery."Panasonic later dissolved its partnership with P.R. Mallory in 1979, and merged the Panasonic Battery Division and National Mallory Battery to form Matsushita Battery Industrial.
Established Matsushita Electric Company (Malaysia)
Due to dry cell battery import restrictions imposed by the Malaysian government, the local agent asked Panasonic to set-up a manufacturing base in Malaysia. Matsushita Electric Company (Malaysia) was then established during this year as a joint venture. In 1966, shares for the joint venture were offered to the public in the Kuala Lumpur market. This made the company a first public-listed subsidiary, and enhanced Panasonic's brand image with the public as a "Malaysian company" now known as Panasonic Manufacturing Malaysia.
Established Matsushita Electric of Puerto Rico and National Mexicana
Matsushita Electric of Puerto Rico was established to manufacture clock radios for the American market. In Mexico, National Mexicana was established as a joint venture with a local company.
Launched a High-Performance Compact Speaker Using the "Technics" Trademark for the First Time
The "Technics" trademark was used for the first time in the "Technics 1" EAB-1204 high-performance compact speakers.
Established Panasonic’s First Peruvian Battery Manufacturer, National Peruana, in Latin America
Around this time, the importation of radios and black & white TVs were prohibited in Peru, but the potential for dry cell batteries was very promising and entry by a 100% foreign capital company was allowed. Because of these circumstances, Panasonic established National Peruana (Grupo Matsushita Electric del Perú), its first Central American manufacturing company, and began producing dry cell batteries.
Established National Centroamericana in Costa Rica
Panasonic established National Centroamericana, a 100% wholly owned subsidiary, as the company’s first manufacturing company in South America. This company started manufacturing and marketing dry cell batteries.
Established Panasonic's First East African Dry Cell Battery Manufacturer
The East African countries of Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania all restricted the importation of dry cell batteries from Japan in 1965. Following this, Panasonic’s first African battery manufacturer, East Africa Matsushita Electric was established, and local production began due to strong demand from the local sales company in Africa’s British regional agency.
Established Matsushita Electric Costa Rica
In 1967, Matsushita Electric Costa Rica was established. After that, it became Panasonic Costa Rica in 1988 and in 2000, merged with Panasonic Guatemala and Panasonic El Salvador to become Panasonic Central America.
Established Matsushita Electric Brazil
Matsushita Electric Brazil was established in Brazil, which was the largest market in South America at the time, as a 100% wholly owned sales company. In 1970, the company also began manufacturing dry cell batteries.
Entered Capital Participation as the First Japan-Philippines Joint Venture
In 1967, Panasonic was exploring local investment opportunities from four companies in the Philippines - including Precision Electronics Corporation (PEC, now Panasonic Manufacturing Philippines). Executive Vice President Arataro Takahashi visited the country to evaluate each company's potential and eventually decided to do a joint venture with PEC. Hence, the production of TVs and stereo equipment began. With thorough improvements made in the areas of quality and finance, the joint venture began to achieve stable performance in the second year since its establishment.
Established Matsushita Electric (Australia)
In Australia, the main products being marketed were dry cell batteries, radios, and tape recorders. However, due to heavy import taxes on products such as TVs to protect the local industry, Matsushita Electric (Australia) was eventually established as an import substitution and production base.
Beginning on May 5th, thank-you parties commemorating the 50thanniversary were held one after another for dealers, distributors, and benefactors. In addition, Panasonic announced that it would donate a total of 5 billion yen as 'a fund for prevention of traffic accidents involving children' to thank society for their favor. Furthermore, they announced the development of factories in Japan's depopulated areas suffering from population relocation towards the city. On the business side, the company was blessed with the "Izanagi boom," a good environment and with the enthusiastic efforts of all employees, numerous 50th anniversary commemorative edition products were born. Panasonic achieved double productivity with sales increasing 34.5% over the previous year. These achievements helped to celebrate the 50th anniversary.Corporate History | Panasonic
Established Matsushita Electric France
Matsushita Electric France was established as Panasonic's first sales company to be responsible for an entire country. It began full-scale marketing activities in the French market.
Established Philips Matsushita Battery in Belgium
Philips Matsushita Battery was established in Belgium as a joint venture with Philips and was made possible because of Panasonic's 10 year cooperation with the company. It began the production of Hi-Top Size D batteries. Panasonic's technology and Philips' management were the driving factors of rolling out new high-quality dry-cell batteries in the European market.
Established National Gobel
In 1970, when the Indonesian government approved the establishment of joint venture companies, many Japanese manufacturers partnered with Chinese enterprises. During this period, Panasonic envisioned itself as "a company that will please the host country" as aligned with its principle on overseas expansion. Panasonic selected Mr. Gobel as a joint venture partner. He was a native Indonesian who had a business relationship with Panasonic for more than 10 years. Thus, National Gobel, a joint venture company, was established.
Listed Stock on the New York Stock Exchange
Panasonic submitted a listing application to the New York Stock Exchange in order to facilitate the distribution of its own securities in the US in line with the needs of domestic and foreign investors. While the listing standards of the New York Stock Exchange were considered to be extremely strict, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission officially granted approval in mid-December and Panasonic shares began trading on the New York Stock Exchange. As a result of this listing, Panasonic increased its public awareness as an international company.
Made Full Use of “Technics” as a Trademark for Premium Audio Products
Panasonic decided to develop “Technics” as a global Hi-Fi audio brand. The brand name originated from the “technology” of faithfully reproducing original sounds, and symbolized the company’s insistence on creating high-quality sound. From 1965 to 2010, the “Technics” brand was developed specifically as a Hi-Fi audio brand. In 2015, the year of its 50th anniversary, the “Technics” brand was revived.
Introduced Panasonic Products to New Zealand Market
In 1971, a sales agreement between the company and Fisher & Paykel saw the introduction of National and Panasonic electronic products to the New Zealand market.
Established Matsushita Electric (Singapore)
During the 1970s, the yen was changed from a fixed rate (1 USD = 360 yen) to a floating rate system, which gave Japan a strong currency value. In response to this situation, Panasonic invested 2 billion yen, approximately 17 million USD (an unprecedented amount at that time), to establish Singapore Matsushita Electric as an export base for compressors.
Established Matsushita Electronic Components (Malaysia) and Matsushita Industrial Corporation
Matsushita Industrial Corporation (air conditioner exports) and the Matsushita Electronic Components (electronic components manufacturing) were established in Malaysia following the request of Tun Abdul Razak, Malaysia's second prime minister, to export industrial components.The prime minister then attended the companies' opening ceremony in 1973, expressing his appreciation for their establishment.
The Founder, Konosuke Matsushita Became Executive Advisor and Former Vice President Arataro Takahashi Assumed the Position of Chairman
In July of 1973, Konosuke retired from the position of chairman on the company's 55th anniversary and became an executive adviser. Chairman Arataro Takahashi and President Masaharu Matsushita's new regime began. A donation of 5 billion yen to the social welfare funds of each prefecture was announced in appreciation of the support from society.
* The photo shows Konosuke giving a greeting upon retiring as chairman, together with incoming Chairman Arataro Takahashi and President Masaharu Matsushita.Corporate History | Panasonic
Established the Panasonic Education Foundation
In full agreement with the opinions of educators on the importance of audiovisual education, Panasonic established the Panasonic Education Foundation as an organization that supports audiovisual education from a public standpoint. In the more than 40 years since then, the foundation has engaged in practical research and activities to promote the focus on information technologies in school education. The Foundation has assisted approximately 2,700 schools to date.
* As of 2013.
Established Korea National Electric
In response to the Korean government's policy, Korea National Electric was established for the purpose of serving as a base for exporting color TVs mainly to America. Production began the next year, 1974, but subsequent changes in the market and the onset of stringent restrictions on the export of color TVs to America from 1979 onward, led to the dissolution of Korea National Electric.
Established Quasar Electronics
Panasonic acquired the television division of Motorola, and established Quasar Electronics. This company inherited the Quasar brand. In 1979, it was renamed Quasar and in 1995, the company was dissolved.
Established National Electronic Components Brazil
National Electronic Components Brazil was established as Panasonic's first local parts business in Latin America. The company started the production of coils, transformers, adjustment knobs, speakers and so on.
* The photo shows President Toshihiko Yamashita touring a factory in 1982.
Issued Convertible Bonds Denominated in Dollars with an Aggregated Face Amount of 100 Million Dollars
In order to reinforce overseas operating assets, it was decided to issue convertible bonds denominated in dollars with an aggregated face amount of 100 million dollars. Public subscription was implemented overseas, mainly in the U.S. These bonds were extremely popular with investors, and sold out quickly.
MECA Moved Its Headquarters to New Jersey
The headquarters of Matsushita Electric Corporation of America was moved from New York City to a new facility in the Meadowlands section of Secaucus, New Jersey.
Established Matsushita Electronic Components
Panasonic's electronic components business began with the company's basic philosophy of integrated production, which said that "good products cannot be made unless parts and finished goods are made in a consistent way." Since then, in addition to 11 workplaces, an electronic parts group, including six parts manufacturing affiliates of Fukui Matsushita Electric, Wakasa Matsushita, Tajima Matsushita, Tsuyama Matsushita, Yamaguchi Matsushita, Hokkaido Matsushita Electric was developed. In addition to that, Panasonic has supplied a large number of parts to a wide range of other users. In January, 11 electronic component group sites separated and became independent. Known as Matsushita Electronic Components, it was established as a manufacturer specializing in general electronic components. Furthermore, the company decided to continue voluntary responsibility management, to establish fundamental technologies for electronic parts materials and to further promote quality, cost and product development.
Established Matsushita Household Equipment and Matsushita Industrial Equipment
In January of 1977, Panasonic separated and made independent its household equipment manufacturing section and industrial equipment manufacturing section with the aim of having comprehensive specialized manufacturers in the housing department and industrial equipment division. The Matsushita Household Equipment was made up of five business divisions of gas equipment, petroleum equipment, hot-water supply heating, heating equipment, and microwave ovens, and the residential equipment research laboratory. The Matsushita Industrial Equipment consisted of the welding machine division, distributor division and industrial instrumentation laboratory.
* The photo shows the commencement of the Matsushita Household Equipment.
Toshihiko Yamashita Appointed President
With the global economic climate in the midst of a major turning point and anticipating further turbulence, in February of 1977 Panasonic aimed to expand its business with the retirement of President Arataro Takahashi, and the appointments of Masaharu Matsushita as chairman and Toshihiko Yamashita as president. It attracted attention as an exceptional rejuvenation of personnel in the stagnant industrial world and became a widely discussed topic everywhere.
* This photo shows President Yamashita greeting the Board of Directors at the inauguration after the General Meeting of the Shareholders.
Established Three Specialized Export Factories, including Matsushita Radio Singapore
Panasonic established 3 specialized export factories: Matsushita Radio Singapore to manufacture audio products, Matsushita Precision Motor Singapore to manufacture AV and OA motors, and Matsushita Electronic Components Singapore to manufacture electronic devices.
Chinese Deputy Prime Minister Deng Xiaoping Visited the Television Division
In October of this year, China’s Deputy Prime Minister Deng Xiaoping visited the TV Division in Osaka, Japan, and stated, “I would like to ask for technical and managerial assistance.” To that end Panasonic’s business development in China began with the founder, Konosuke Matsushita, comfortably accepting and saying, “I will help you as much as possible.” In the next year, 1979, Konosuke visited China and held discussions with numerous government officials, including Deputy Prime Minister Deng.
*The photo shows Deputy Prime Minister Deng Xiaoping and his party visiting the TV Division led by Konosuke.
Established Panasonic Mexico
In 1977, Panasonic sold its shares in National Mexicana, a joint venture established in Mexico in 1965 with a local enterprise. In order to secure a market, Panasonic began negotiations with the Mexican government, and in this year Panasonic established Panasonic Mexico. The new company started manufacturing and marketing radio cassettes, recorders, TVs, and components.
* The photo shows a ceremony for the first shipment of players in 1987.
Established Matsushita Technical Center Singapore
Panasonic established the Matsushita Technical Center Singapore to transfer production technology from Japan to Singapore, in response to a request from the Singapore government.
The Founder, Konosuke Matsushita Visited China
Panasonic’s business development in China began in October 1978 when Deputy Prime Minister Deng Xiaoping visited the the Panasonic TV Division. Konosuke then visited China the following year. In discussions with Deputy Prime Minister Deng and Deputy Premier Gu Mu, Konosuke promised to cooperate in the field of electronics to promote the modernization of China.
Established Matsushita Battery Industrial
The founder, who had great expectations for the future of batteries, wanted to establish the battery business in a variety of different areas. As such, he separated the company's battery operations. Matsushita Battery Industrial was established with the goal of becoming one of the world's leading comprehensive battery manufacturers.
* The photo shows a general battery exhibition celebrating the commencement of Matsushita Battery Industrial.
Entered the Avionics Business (Entertainment Systems for Aircraft)
Panasonic entered the avionics business (AV systems used on aircraft) by designing and developing systems for passenger and crew member use that provided in-flight entertainment, communication, and maintenance services. The reliability of the initial products, which used radio downsizing technology, gained a reputation and today, Panasonic supports over 300 airline companies throughout the world. The systems provide comfortable in-flight environments to over one billion people every year.
*The photo shows entertainment and service systems delivered to aircraft manufacturers in 1980. (Consisting of audio, a reading lamp, and attendant call unit.)Panasonic Avionics: Connecting the Business and Pleasure of Flying
Matsushita Industrial de Baja California established in Mexico
* The photo shows the founder, Konosuke Matsushita, visiting Matsushita Industrial de Baja California
Established Katano Matsushita, a Welfare Factory for Disabled Employees
Katano Matsushita was established to promote the welfare of people with disabilities by taking advantage of the International Year of Disabled Persons. In order to enhance the independence and social participation of people with disabilities, the company was established with a large number of workplaces for disabled employees. This was funded by the third sector with equity investment from Osaka Prefecture, Katano City, and Panasonic, and subsidies from the Employment Payment System for disabled persons under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare. It was designed to enable both employees with and without disabilities to work in a bright, comfortable environment.
Established Springer National da Amazonia
When President Masaharu Matsushita visited Brazil in 1976, he inspected Manaus in the Amazon River outback, to which the country was aiming to attract foreign companies as a regional promotion measure, and decided on this location. As a result of several years of negotiations, the manufacture of televisions began in 1978 in partnership with Springer Amazonia in the country. The company expanded production steadily, and this year, a joint venture company with Brazilian National Corporation, Springer National da Amazonia was established.
* The photo shows the factory line of Springer National da Amazonia in 1986.
Established The International Electric Fan Manufacturing Company in Hong Kong
The International Electric Fan Manufacturing was established in Hong Kong. The company began the production of ceiling fans as the Panasonic Group's first re-exportation plant.
Established Numerous Manufacturing Companies in Europe, including Matsushita Communication Deutschland
As trade friction between Japan and Europe increased, the local production of video, car radio and related electronic components was accelerated as anti-dumping measures. Starting with M.B. Video, this included the establishment of Matsushita Communication Deutschland, Matsushita Business Machine (Europe), Kyushu Matsushita Electric (U.K.), Matsushita Communication Industrial (U.K.), and Matsushita Graphic Communication Systems (U.K.).
President Yamashita Announced the Promotion of "ACTION 86"
A new three-year management plan, called ACTION 86, was formulated following the completion of the three-year mid-term plan from 1978. It aimed to clarify methods to develop into a comprehensive electronics manufacturer focused on reforming the business structure for that purpose, strengthening the management structure, and strengthening overseas business. In addition, while concentrating on the conventional home electronics business, Panasonic focused on the future of various devices, semiconductors and industrial fields. The company also began exploring methods of corporate development in the B2B field.Corporate History | Panasonic
Shifted Overseas Headquarters Functions to Matsushita Electric Trading
The overseas headquarters was shifted to Matushita Electric Trading and split into 5 regions - North America Headquarters, Latin America Headquarters, Europe Headquarters, Asia & Oceania Headquarters, and Middle East & Africa Headquarters.
Established the Matsushita Foundation in the US Aimed at Support for Educational Institutions
To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the establishment of Matsushita Electric Corporation of America, an organization was founded to support public education systems in the U.S. Under the values of the founder, Konosuke Matsushita, and his philosophy of being a public entity of society, the foundation has also collaborated with education and community officials to ensure that all students have opportunities to receive public education that is not dependent on race, ethnicity, or economic environments, and it continues to provide various types of support to meet that goal.
Established Fuego National in Argentina
In South America, which was aiming to break out of the debt crisis triggered by the Mexican currency crisis of 1982, countries started introducing economic liberalization and trade liberalization policies. In that spirit, Panasonic established Fuego National in Argentina this year as a result of the tax exemption benefit implemented as a depopulated region promotion policy by the Argentinean government. This company started the production of audio products.
Issued the Company's First Commercial Paper in the US and Europe
Panasonic Finance (America) was established and issued its first 10-million-dollar commercial paper (CP). This CP officially acquired the highest rating of short-term bonds alongside the world’s top class corporations from the two largest rating agencies in the U.S. and streamlined short-term funding costs. In the following year, the company established Panasonic Finance in the Netherlands and the U.K. in May and issued a Euro CP of 100 million dollars in August. This issue marked the first time a Japanese company receives the highest grade rating, making it possible to procure funds for local production companies at low cost, and contributed greatly to the promotion of international business.
Akio Tanii Appointed President
In February of this year, Toshihiko Yamashita retired from the presidency to serve as a senior adviser and Akio Tanii took over as president. Mr. Tanii, who led the mid-term plan "ACTION 86" as vice president, designated OA, New AV, FA, and semiconductors as a four-point business plan. He promoted the reform of the business structure under the banner of "advanced human-electronics technology that satisfies the heart."
* The photo shows (from left) Chairman Masaharu Matsushita, Adviser Toshihiko Yamashita, and President Akio Tanii at a party celebrating the appointment of President Akio Tanii.Corporate History | Panasonic
Established Beijing Matsushita Color CRT in China
Beijing Matsushita Color CRT was established as the first joint venture in China, between Panasonic and the city of Beijing. The joint venture was clearly based on the basic Panasonic philosophy that "the country's most welcome industry should be selected." The cathode ray tube was chosen because it is a core part of the color TV that previously had to be imported. Production started two years later, in 1989.
Merged Matsushita Electric Trading
In 1988, due to the growth of overseas business and international trading, Panasonic and Matsushita Electric Trading merged and began operating on the basis of a unified overseas management system.Corporate History | Panasonic
Cumulative Domestic Production of Electric Fans Reached 50 Million Units
Kawakita Electric Enterprise Company, which was founded in 1909, entered the Panasonic Group in 1956 as the pioneer developer of domestic fans, in 1913, marked by the release of the first unit. In the 75 years since then, Panasonic has achieved a cumulative total of 50 million domestically produced units.The photo show the "1/f Fluctuation" electric fan, released in 1988.
Established Panasonic Europe as European Regional Headquarters
In recognition of the European Commission market integration of 1992, Panasonic reorganized Matsushita Electric U.K. as European regional headquarters and established Panasonic Europe.
Established Matsushita Electric Asia
In 1989, Matsushita Electric (Singapore) was reorganized to form Matsushita Electric Asia in order to propel its overseas business in Southeast Asia, and strengthen its support of local activities. The new company oversaw the main management, R&D, and employee training for overseas companies in ASEAN countries.
KWN (Kid Witness News) Started in the US
KWN (Kid Witness News) is a global educational program through which Panasonic supports video production by students from elementary to high school. This year, 19 public schools in the U.S. participated. Children, by themselves, selected subjects and learned about social tasks and teamwork through the processes of planning, interviewing, shooting, and editing. KWN has gradually expanded into multiple countries, and 180,000 children have participated so far (as of 2016).
Established the Matsushita Avionics Development Corporation
Panasonic, which entered the field of avionics (In-Flight Entertainment System) in 1979, established the Matsushita Avionics Development Corporation in Irvine, California, in June 1990. The company began with around a dozen employees with the aim of developing an interactive entertainment system for aircraft passengers.
Acquired MCA, a Major US Entertainment Company
Panasonic acquired the American entertainment giant MCA with Universal Pictures, etc., as affiliates. Utilizing the synergy between the company's rich video content and the Panasonic AV business, it was a large acquisition that aimed at creating a new business for the 21st century from the fusion of hardware and software.
* Partially sold in 1995, and completely sold in 2006.Corporate History | Panasonic
Established Springer Panasonic Amazonia
Brazil's Springer National da Amazonia and Springer National Electronic Components were united to establish Springer Panasonic da Amazonia.
Environmental Charter Set Forth
As environmental issues gathered attention on a global scale, for the first time in the industry, Panasonic established its own environmental management basic policy, the Matsushita Environmental Charter, which was the first unique environmental management basic policy in the industry. The Panasonic Group worldwide is proceeding with business activities according to this policy. In addition, the company promoted aggressive efforts from the aspects of both management and citizen activities, including the establishment of the Environmental Declaration in 1993 and the establishment of the Environmental Headquarters in 1997.Environment : Panasonic Environment Vision 2050
Established Matsushita Storage Battery Corporation of America
Matsushita Storage Battery Corporation of America was established as a production base for sealed-lead storage batteries. In 1993, the company name was changed to Matsushita Battery Industrial of America.
Established the Matsushita Air-Conditioning R&D Center
In 1991, the Matsushita Air-Conditioning R&D Center Malaysia was established to conduct R&D (Research & Development) on air conditioners. This was followed in 1997 by setting up the Matsushita Compressor & Motor R&D Center to develop compressors and products that catered to the local climate and lifestyles. This marked an excellent achievement by the company.
Established Hangzhou Kanamatsu Washing Machine, Beijing Matsushita Communication Equipment, Guangzhou Matsushita, and Banba Irons in China
In the 1990s, China, where the demand for TVs and video decks was increasing, was focused on as a base for business development next to the Asia Pacific region. Following the establishment of three companies -- Hangzhou Kanamatsu Washing Machine, Beijing Matsushita Communication Equipment, and Guangzhou Matsushita and Banba Irons -- in this year, manufacturing facilities of various products were founded across China.
Yoichi Morishita Appointed President
In February of this year when the bubble economy collapsed, land prices and stock prices dropped, and economic recovery was sure to be difficult, Yoichi Morishita assumed the office of president from President Tanii. Moving towards "rebuilding," Panasonic promoted aggressive reform with "creativity and daring" as its banner. The "three-year rebuilding plan" started with substantial reform of the AVC division, restructuring of the headquarters technical division, improved efficiency in indirect departments, etc., and in fiscal 1996, the company achieved "rebuilding" success through increased sales and profits.
* The photo shows President Morishita at his inaugural press conference.Corporate History | Panasonic
Panasonic Purchased All Matsushita Electronic Corporation Shares from Philips
Panasonic acquired all shares of Matsushita Electronic Corporation from Philips of the Netherlands. Matsushita Electronic Corporation was the first joint venture established by Panasonic and Philips, back in 1952. It was a collaboration as a result of the founder, Konosuke Matsushita, visiting leading companies in the U.S. and Europe and studying each company based on the thought that technology collaboration with advanced companies in Europe and the U.S. was indispensable for future development.
* The photo shows the signing ceremony for purchasing Matsushita Electronic Corporation shares.
Established Philips Matsushita Battery Poland
Panasonic and Philips invested 50% each to establish Philips Matsushita Battery Poland. This production base in the country formed a foothold in central Europe, which was a former communist zone market.
Reached Global Production of 100 Million Irons
Panasonic's household electric iron, which came out in 1927, continued to be popular in about 60 countries around the world, and the cumulative global production volume reached 100 million units in this year. In 2015, cumulative global shipments exceeded 200 million units.
* The photo shows the 1st generation Super Iron released in 1927.
Established Matsushita Electric (China), a Joint Venture Company
With the establishment of manufacturing factories all over China in the first half of the 1990s, the Panasonic Group increased the need for a comprehensive company that would be responsible for more efficient and unified marketing and various business support activities. China still had strict restrictions on foreign capital, but this year, President Morishita held discussions with Vice Premier Zhu Rongji. Panasonic established Matsushita Electric (China), which was the first comprehensive business support company to be formed as a multinational manufacturer, with recognition of past experience in the country.
* Matsushita Electric (China) underwent self-utilization conversion in 2002 and was renamed Panasonic China in 2005.
Absorbed Matsushita Household Equipment
Panasonic and Matsushita Household Equipment merged. The background for the merger was a growing need to coordinate kitchen, bath, and hot water supply equipment into comprehensive systems, and the importance of combining manufacturing and sales in order to develop products jointly with housing manufacturers. This merger centralized and specialized the company's dispersed housing equipment business and integrated the electric business of the former Matsushita Household Equipment with Panasonic's electrification business to strengthen the product power, sales force, and management structure.
* The photo shows the signing ceremony for the merger with Matsushita Household Equipment.
Established Central Europe Matsushita TV
In addition to Western Europe, Panasonic established Central Europe Matsushita TV to respond to the predictably large TV demand in Eastern Europe and CIS markets to form the largest TV production base next to the U.K. This marked the first entry of a Japanese company into Czechoslovakia, and the full cooperation from the Czechoslovakian government made it possible for Panasonic to start operation in a short time. Later, production was also shifted from the U.K., enabling the production of 50 TV models.
Began a Year-Round Call Center Service
A year-round call center service was begun for customers in Japan and North America. This 365-day call center was the industry's first and this high level of customer support became an active topic of conversation.
Established Panasonic CIS
Panasonic CIS was established in Helsinki to serve as the CIS business base. At the same time, representative offices were also established in Moscow, Kiev, and Almaty. Following this start, a local subsidiary, Panasonic Russia, was established in 2005, followed by Panasonic Ukraine in 2011, to advance the localization of operations. Also, what began as the sales of mainly TVs has now diversified into a range extending from home appliances to B2B. For more than 20 years, business has sprouted firm roots in Russia and the CIS countries.
Established Panasonic Gulf Company, the Company's First Middle East Sales Company in UAE
A resident office was established in 1990, and a Middle East Headquarters was established in 1991 in Dubai, U.A.E. The first Middle East sales company, Panasonic Gulf Company, was also established. Re-exporting began to neighboring countries.
Established the Latin America Center in Miami, US
Part of the headquarter functions were shifted to Miami, which is near to Latin America, and the Latin America Center was established to provide assistance activities to local companies. In 1998, it was changed to Matsushita Electric Latin America, an independent corporation.
Created the Panasonic Scholarship
The company established the Panasonic Scholarship system as an 80th anniversary project. Later, in March 2016, this was discontinued as a constructive step, leading the way to creating a new Panasonic Scholarship Asia system to provide financial support for students enrolled in universities in Asian countries and regions as a community-based, next-generation training support system.Panasonic Scholarship Asia
Achieved the World's First 200 Million-Unit TV Production Mark
In 1952, a year before TV broadcasting had started in Japan, Panasonic began producing black & white TVs. Over the course of 40 years since then, the cumulative number of sales exceeded 200 million in 1998. Later, in 2008, the company also achieved the world's first 300 million-unit record.
* The photo shows the shipping of the 200 millionth TV, a high-quality, flat-panel T (tau) series model.
Established Panasonic New Zealand
Panasonic New Zealand was officially established in 1998. To date, it has 115 employees across Christchurch, Wellington and its headquarters in Auckland, and continues to be part of the fabric of New Zealand.
Announced a Comprehensive Agreement with Toshiba and SanDisk for the Development and Standardization of the SD Card
The company signed an agreement with Toshiba and SanDisk for comprehensive, mutual cooperation in the joint development, standardization, and spread of the copyright protected SD Memory Card, a compact memory card. It was announced that they aimed to start mass production from 2000 with capacities of 32 and 64 MB.
* SD Memory Cards and their application products were promoted at the 2000 CES.
Established Matsushita Gobel Battery Indonesia
Matsushita Gobel Battery Industry and Panasonic Battery Indonesia merged to form Matsushita Gobel Battery Indonesia.
Established Matsushita Eco Technology Center
Matsushita Eco Technology Center was founded in response to the fact that effective utilization of resources has been regarded as one of the basic missions of the manufacturing industry. The company began recycling end-of-life home electronics products from April in the following year. Since then, it has promoted its business while developing innovative recycling technologies. In July 2013, the center recycled a total of 10 million household appliances.
* Company name changed to Panasonic Eco Technology Center in October 2008.
* The photo shows Chairman Morishita touring the TV disassembly line.
Kunio Nakamura Appointed President
The progress of the IT revolution changed industrial structures and lifestyles from the ground up. In the electronics industry, the shift from a 20th century to a 21st century type corporation became a challenge. In June of this year, Kunio Nakamura replaced President Morishita. President Nakamura promoted a 3-year management plan, "Value Creation 21 Plan," starting in fiscal 2001. The plan aimed at a "Deconstruct & Create" policy (implementing Groupwide structural reform and Groupwide growth strategies) to innovate towards a "Super Manufacturing Company." The goal was to create a new Panasonic capable of contributing to society in the 21st century.
* The photo shows President Nakamura addressing a press conference to mark his inauguration.
Established the SD Association
The SD Association was established by Panasonic, SanDisk, and Toshiba as a non-profit organization for the purpose of establishing and promoting the standard for memory card storage. Today, approximately 1,000 member companies have designed and developed SD standards at the SD Association.
Unified 3 Latin American Companies to Establish Panasonic Centroamericana
Costa Rica Panasonic, which was established in 1988, was unified with Guatemala Panasonic and El Salvador Panasonic in 2000 to form Panasonic Centroamericana.
Absorbed Matsushita Electronics Corporation
Matsushita Electronics Corporation, became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Panasonic after the dissolution of the joint venture with Philips in 1993, and the company became the Panasonic's internal division company in 2001.
Achieved Global Production and Sale of 100 Billion Dry Cell Batteries
Since its acquisition of Komori Dry Cell Batteries and the beginning of its own production in 1931, Panasonic achieved the global production and sale of 100 billion dry cell batteries in 2001, 71 years later. It then exceeded 150 billion in 2010.
Established Panasonic Hollywood Laboratory
Panasonic Hollywood Laboratory was established in Hollywood, home to world-class movie creators in April.HOLLYWOOD TO YOUR HOME
Launched Asia Matsushita Electric into a Regional Headquarters
Asia Matsushita Electric was converted into a regional headquarters, hence marking the beginning of Panasonic Asia Pacific.
Established Panasonic Marketing Middle East Company in UAE
Based on a localization policy of “moving export and sales activities close to the market,” Panasonic Marketing Middle East Company was established in Dubai, U.A.E. as a Middle East regional sales base.
Established Panasonic Peruana S.A.
Matsushita Electric Peru and Panasonic Peru were merged to establish Panasonic Peruana S.A.
Cumulative Global Production of Electric Fans Reached 100 Million Units
As the leader in developing Japan's first domestic electric fan, Panasonic reached cumulative global in June of the 90th year since the first fan was produced in 1913.
Established Panasonic Center Tokyo
Panasonic Center Tokyo was opened as a corporate showroom to transmit and receive global, general information. It serves to present actual examples and solutions aimed at achieving Panasonic's brand slogan, "A Better Life, A Better World" for each and every customer. The aim is to promote communication by receiving direct opinions and requests from customers.Corporate Showroom Panasonic Center
Matsushita Communication Industrial, Kyushu Matsushita Electric, Matsushita Seiko, Matsushita Kotobuki Electronics Industries and Matsushita Graphic Communication Systems Became Subsidiaries
Panasonic decided on a policy to make the five companies of Matsushita Communication Industrial, Kyushu Matsushita Electric, Matsushita Seiko, Matsushita Kotobuki Electronics Industries, and Matsushita Graphic Communication Systems, wholly-owned subsidiaries in October.
Established the Blu-ray Disc (BD) Standard
Nine companies including Panasonic announced the founding of the Blu-ray Disc standard, a video recording standard. Multi-layering each individual disc enabled a significant increase in its storage capacity. In addition to major features, such as HD image compatibility, the high-level specification compatibility enabled use in data storage and a wide range of applications.
Unified the Global Brand to "Panasonic"
The company decided to unify the global brand to Panasonic and to create the global brand slogan, "Panasonic ideas for life." Since 1955 Panasonic had been using this name as a brand for exporting speakers. The brand accumulated positive brand images such as "good quality, reliability and security," as well as "advanced and innovative," mainly in Europe and the United States. The company positioned Panasonic as a global brand and planned further expansion of the brand’s value by deploying it in all overseas regions.Corporate History | Panasonic
New Group System Started Based on Operational Domains
Since many operations are duplicated within the Group, it is necessary to reorganize the entire Group's operations to resolve the present competitive relations. In October 2002, the five companies of Matsushita Communications Industrial, Kyushu Matsushita Electric, Matsushita Seiko, Matsushita-Kotobuki Electronics Industries, and Matsushita Graphic Communication Systems were completely converted into subsidiaries. In April 2003, in the field of devices, Matsushita Electronic Components and Matsushita Battery Industrial were also completely converted into subsidiaries, and in the field of appliances, electrical and residential equipment companies, and air conditioning company were dissolved to form the Matsushita Home Appliance Company.Corporate History | Panasonic
Matsushita Electric Works, PanaHome Corporation, and Others Became Consolidated Subsidiaries
In April of 2004, Panasonic acquired additional shares of Matsushita Electric Works, and PanaHome Corporation, and converted them, together with other affiliated subsidiaries, into consolidated subsidiaries. Based on a new capital relationship to form a single group, and reorganizing the development, manufacturing and sales functions it had in order to respond to the demands of the times where goods and services needed to be based on new values that required networking and environmental measures, Panasonic merged the two companies in September. Panasonic also decided to consolidate its appliances business into Panasonic and its electric materials, housing, and equipment business into Matsushita Electric Works.
* Matsushita Electric Works changed its name to Panasonic Electric Works later. In 2012, it became Eco Solutions Company.
Completed 100% non-CFC Conversion of Household Refrigerators
Because the ozone layer was being destroyed by Freon, which was a common refrigerant in refrigerators, switching to CFC substitutes was being carried out in the latter half of the 1990s. However, the substitute CFC contributed to global warming as a problematic side effect. Panasonic responded to this quickly and announced the first non-CFC refrigerator in Japan in November 2001. Three years later, in April 2004 for domestic, and September for exports, the company completed a 100% non-CFC changeover for household refrigerators.
Cumulative Global Production of Vacuum Cleaners Reached 100 Million Units
Panasonic achieved a cumulative production total of 100 million vacuum cleaners in October of this year, 47 years after the release of the first unit in 1958.
25th Anniversary Commemorative Panasonic Expo Held by Panasonic Mexico
Panasonic Mexico held the Panasonic Expo in this year to commemorate its 25th anniversary since it was founded in 1978. Over 38,000 participants attended to enjoy a wide range of content, from exhibitions showcasing the company’s history, latest products and technologies to a concert.
Achieved the cumulative production of 3 Million TVs in Mexico
The number of TVs produced in Mexico, which started in 1988, reached a total of 3 million units.
Absorbed Matsushita Industrial Information Equipment
Matsushita Industrial Information Equipment was merged with Panasonic on April 1 of 2005 in order to reorganize and strengthen the manufacture of related industrial equipment, such as central monitoring boards and high-voltage receiving and distribution equipment.
Compatibility with the European Environmental Directive RoHS for 31,400 Products
* Directive restricted the use of certain hazardous substances contained in electrical and electronic equipment and was scheduled to be enforced in July 2006 by the EU. Panasonic responded proactively by formulating a policy not to use the target substances in any products to be shipped from April 2015 onwards.
*Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment (RoHS).
Established Ene EcologyNet Europe
Panasonic's first business base for recycling-related operations, called Ene EcologyNet Europe, was established in Wiesbaden, Germany. In order to comply with the German eWaste legislation while providing low-cost, high-efficiency recycling business, this company mediated between manufacturers and the logistics and recycling companies.
Established Panasonic Vietnam
Matsushita Electric Vietnam and Matsushita Home Appliances Vietnam were previously established to produce AV products and home appliances, respectively. In 2005, the Vietnamese government approved the founding of a company with 100% foreign-owned holding functions. Panasonic Vietnam was thus established as a unified holding company.
Fumio Ohtsubo Appointed President
In June of this year, Fumio Ohtsubo became president following President Nakamura. He established the policy of "aiming for global excellence as a manufacturing company." Kunio Nakamura, the former president was promoted to chairman of the board of directors, and Yoichi Morishita was appointed executive adviser.
* The photo shows President Nakamura and Managing Director Otsubo shaking hands at the end of a press conference at the February Board of Directors' meeting.
Reached the World's First Air Conditioning Compressors Production Cumulative Total of 200 Million Units
On September 6th 2006, Panasonic reached the world's first cumulative global production of air conditioning compressors of 200 million units.
Established Panasonic Chile
Panasonic's Products have been sold through distributors in Chile since 1966, but this year the distributor contracts were terminated and Panasonic Chile was established.
Merged Matsushita Refrigeration Company
In 1952, Nakagawa Electric Company, which joined the company by means of a capital tie-up, changed its name to Matsushita Refrigeration, and produced refrigeration devices, such as refrigerators, vending machines, and compressors. Together with Matsushita Home Appliance and Matsushita Food Systems, this formed the Home Appliance Group, i.e., the Appliance, Refrigeration, and Air Conditioning Departments of Matsushita Electric Industrial. In accordance with the reorganization of Matsushita Home Appliance, it was absorbed into Matsushita Electric Industrial on April 1, 2008.
Changed the Company Name to "Panasonic Corporation"
In October of 2008, the company celebrated the 90th anniversary of the founding of Matsushita Electric Industrial and changed its name to "Panasonic Corporation" and all brands in Japan and overseas became unified under "Panasonic." As a result of this company name change, the name of "Matsushita" that was popular for nearly a century since its foundation in 1918 was no longer used.
* In China, the company name "Matsushita Electric" remains in consideration of its brand value[Press Release] Matsushita Electric to Change Name to Panasonic Corporation
Merged Matsushita Battery Industrial
Matsushita Battery Industrial, which had been converted into a wholly owned subsidiary through a share exchange in 2003, was merged into Panasonic in October of 2008. In April 2013, Automotive Systems Company, Device Company, Energy Company, Manufacturing Solutions Company, Panasonic Cycle Technology, and Panasonic Polytechnology. were merged, and Automotive & Industrial Systems Company was established.
Reached the World's First TV Production Cumulative Total of 300 Million Units
After achieving a production total of 100 million units in 1985, and then 200 million in 1998, Panasonic again achieved the world's first of 300 million units in TV production in 2008, 56 years after their first TV was produced in 1952. Panasonic brands have televised the world’s consumer images through 100 million TVs under the National name and 200 million under the Panasonic name.
* Cumulative production by brand (National: 105 million units / Panasonic: 195 million units)
SANYO Electric Co., Ltd. and Its Subsidiaries Became a Panasonic Consolidated Subsidiary
In December, Panasonic acquired a majority of the voting rights of "SANYO Electric Co., Ltd.," and its subsidiary companies and they became consolidated subsidiaries of Panasonic.
Partnered with Tesla Motors
Panasonic announced a partnership with Tesla Motors, and decided to collaborate on developing next-generation batteries for electric vehicles. In 2017, Panasonic signed a contract with Tesla to expand the supply of EV lithium ion batteries. In 2014, Panasonic and Tesla began joint operation of Gigafactory, the world's largest lithium ion battery factory.[Press Release] Panasonic and Tesla Sign Agreement for the Gigafactory(Jul 31, 2014)
Established Panasonic Risupia Vietnam
Panasonic Risupia Vietnam opened in Hanoi as the second facility of its kind worldwide, following the first one in Japan. It is a thematic communication space based on science and mathematics, and aims to help Vietnamese children cultivate an interest in those subjects. Next to the Risupia space is a showroom where Panasonic's advanced technologies are displayed.
Panasonic Electric Works and Sanyo Electric Converted to Subsidiaries
In the Business Policy Announcement of January 2010, Panasonic President Fumio Otsubo spoke of converting Panasonic Electric Works and Sanyo Electric to subsidiaries in April of 2011 as part of the company's efforts to achieve its 100th Anniversary Vision of becoming the "Electronics No. 1 Environmental Innovation Enterprise." From April 2012, the Panasonic Group's operations commenced in a new system that was reorganized into three fields: Consumers, Solutions, and Devices.
The photo shows President Sano of SANYO Electric (left), President Ohtsubo of Panasonic (middle), and President Nagae of Panasonic Electric Works (right) joining their hands at the press conference in July 2010.Corporate History | Panasonic
Signed a Strategic Partnership with the UNESCO World Heritage Center
In June of this year, Panasonic Corporation and the UNESCO World Heritage Center concluded a strategic partnership aiming to promote sustainable growth through the conservation of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. For two years, Panasonic conducted next-generation environmental education activities including “The World Heritage Special” program, which was carried out in 183 countries and regions on the National Geographic Channel and the support of 3D related AV equipment and technology.Panasonic and UNESCO Sign Strategic Partnership Agreement (Jun 03, 2011)
Opened a Branch in Cambodia
Panasonic's Cambodia representative office opened in Phnom Penh. Cambodia has been recognized as a country with high potential, bolstered by the country's positive outlook for foreign investment.
Merged Panasonic Electric Works
Panasonic made Panasonic Electric Works a wholly owned subsidiary through share exchanges in 2011, then Panasonic absorbed the company in January of 2012. As a result of this restructuring, Panasonic Electric Works was transferred to a new business structure consisting of nine domains and one marketing department.[Press Release] Panasonic to Absorb Wholly-Owned Subsidiary (Panasonic Electric Works Co., Ltd.) (Aug 31, 2011)
Kazuhiro Tsuga Appointed President
Kazuhiro Tsuga assumed the office of president of Panasonic Corporation on June 27 of this year. The former president, Fumio Otsubo, was appointed chairman.Panasonic CEO's Profile
Established the Extrema Factory, a Manufacturing Base for Appliances in Brazil
A new factory for large-scale appliances was opened in Extrema, Brazil. This factory, which served as a state-of-the-art manufacturing base for facilities, construction methods and product designs, began production of refrigerator and after washing machines in 2014.
President Tsuga Delivers a Keynote Speech at "2013 International CES"
President Tsuga gave the opening keynote speech on the first day of the 2013 International CES held in January of this year in Las Vegas, USA. CES is the world's largest-scale consumer electronics show. From B2C to B2B, the company provides a global view of its diverse range of businesses and future directions along with prototypes and actual products.Corporate History | Panasonic
Launched the 4-Company System
It was announced that a total of 49 divisions were consolidated into four companies: the Appliance Company, Eco Solutions Company, AVC Network Company, and Automotive and Industrial Systems Company. The company aims to support the divisions through the operational development, new operational creation, and reinforcement of core devices for these fields.Corporate History | Panasonic
Cumulative Global Production of Washing Machines Reached 100 Million Units
Panasonic Corporation Appliances, which started production on September 1951, achieved production of 100 million washing machine units on August 23, 2013.The history of Panasonic washing machines began when, the founder visited the American market and saw the washing machine commercialization. He thought that it would be an important product to release housewives from the heavy burden of housework. Product development began with his instructions based on this idea.In 1951, at the 13 plants in Osaka, the production of an "agitator-type washing machine" began. With the spread of full-fledged laundry machines in the Japanese market since the late 1950s, the cumulative total of 10 million units was achieved in 1972 and then 50 million units in 1998. After that, production in China and other Asian areas led to the increase of 50 million units to 100 million units in 15 years.
A New Brand Slogan, A Better Life, A Better World, Created
A new brand slogan, A Better Life, A Better World, was created to express the mission of the Panasonic Group as it approaches its 100th anniversary. While pursuing a better life for its partners and customers in the fields of housing, society, business, travel, automobiles and other domains, the Panasonic message also extends to BtoC and BtoB enterprises in order to contribute to a better world, starting with contributions to a healthier environment.[Press Release] Panasonic Establishes “A Better Life, A Better World” as its New Brand Slogan (Sep 4, 2013)
Moved the Head Office of Panasonic Corporation of North America to a New Facility
The head office of Panasonic Corporation of North America was moved to a new facility in Newark, New Jersey.Panasonic North America
Concluded an Agreement to Be a Worldwide Official Partner for the Olympic Games from 2017 to 2024
Panasonic has concluded an agreement with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to be a Worldwide Official Partner for the Olympic Games from 2017 to 2024, a period of eight years. This means that Panasonic will be contributing advanced technologies and products to the next four Olympic Games, starting with the Olympic Winter Games Pyeongchang 2018, the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, the Olympic Winter Games Beijin 2022 and the Olympic Games Paris 2024.Panasonic Olympic Special Site
Turkish Wiring Equipment Manufacturer, ViKO Became a Subsidiary
In October, Panasonic entered into a stock purchase agreement with ViKO, the top manufacturer of wiring equipment in Turkey. As a result, mid- to long-term growth is expected in the Turkish market and its neighboring countries and Panasonic aimed to fully expand the electrical construction materials business such as wiring equipment, low-voltage circuit equipment, building and automation systems, and smart meters.
Held a Celebration for the 35th Anniversary of Chinese Operations
Panasonic China held a celebration in Beijing for the 35th anniversary of Chinese operations. Approximately 300 government officials and business-related guests attended the celebration, together with representatives of around 100 media companies. In a speech, Panasonic President Kazuhiro Tsuga relayed the history of the company's Chinese operations while describing the future goals of the Panasonic Group.Panasonic Celebrates 35 Years in China
Signed as a Worldwide Official Partner with the International Paralympic Committee
Panasonic has concluded an agreement with the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), the host of the world's highest level of international competition for athletes with impairment, to be a Worldwide Official Partner for a total of six years and two months, from 2014 to 2020.Panasonic Olympic Special Site
Announced the R&D 10-Year Vision
Panasonic announced that it will focus on the dual pillars of IoT/robotics via artificial intelligence (AI), sensing and UI/UX, and energy via electrical storage and hydrogen technologies, for the direction of its research and development looking 10 years ahead, to help achieve a better lifestyle and society.[Topics] Panasonic Announced Its R&D Concept and Launched the "R&D 10-Year Vision" Website (Apr 11, 2016)
Acquired Digital Full Services for Latin America’s First M&A
Panasonic Brazil acquired Digital Full Service, which has a high market share in the country’s food-service industry in the digital signage business. By acquiring the company, whose major businesses included equipment integration, installation and maintenance, and content generation and distribution services, Panasonic aimed to expand its business model of selling solutions and value chains primarily based on digital signage systems.
Established Panasonic Solution & Innovation Center Vietnam
Panasonic Solution & Innovation Center Vietnam, the Product Automation Showroom in Southeast Asia, was aimed at showcasing highly efficient manufacturing technologies and equipment. The Innovation Center featured not only Panasonic’s latest chip mounter and welding machine, but also peripheral equipment from other partners which included component towers and inspection machines. This synergy highlighted the importance of network compatibility and technological interconnectedness, and contributed to the success of Industry 4.0 and the IoT-supported manufacturing line.
Established Panasonic AP China
Panasonic AP China was established in Zhejiang Province as a new company integrating China's home appliance business.
Established a Factory in Dalian, China, for Automotive Lithium-Ion Batteries
A new factory was established in Dalian, China, for automotive lithium-ion batteries. The same factory has also become a production base for Panasonic's first automotive battery cells in China.[Press Release] Panasonic Opens New Automotive Lithium-ion Battery Factory in Dalian, China (April 27, 2017)
Panasonic Brazil Acquired Large-Scale Air Conditioning Engineering Company UNION RHAC TECNOLOGIA
Panasonic Brazil acquired UNION RHAC TECNOLOGIA, which operates an air conditioning engineering service business based primarily on absorption-type refrigerating machines (chillers). Taking advantage of the company’s 25-year history in Brazil and their past performance that consists of over 100 large projects involving large-scale commercial facilities, buildings and construction, Panasonic aimed to accelerate its B2B solutions business for large-scale air conditioners.[Press Release] Panasonic Acquires UNION RHAC TECNOLOGIA, Brazilian Air Conditioning Engineering Company (Sep 13, 2017)
Achieved the Cumulative Production of 10 Billion Dry Cell Batteries in Brazil
Panasonic Brazil marked the 50th anniversary of the foundation in this year that its production of dry cell batteries, which began in 1970, reached a total of 10 billion units, and a commemorative ceremony was held at the São José Factory.
Achieved the 1,000,000th Product Produced in Extrema Factory, Brazil
Extrema factory which produces refrigerator and washing machine, completed the 1,000,000th product produced in 5th Anniversary of foundation.