DNP’s century-plus history of taking up new challenges is also a history of contribution to the development of emergently evolving society
1. The Birth of Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd. (1876 - 1945)
Shueisha, the predecessor of DNP, was founded on Oct. 9, 1876, shortly after the beginning of the "cultural awakening” that accompanied Japan's Meiji Restoration.
Teiichi Sakuma and three partners began the company based on their keen awareness of the need to spread knowledge and culture by means of printing. They started by printing newspapers aimed at spreading Buddhist and Shinto teachings, as well as ordinary daily newspapers.
Shueisha also printed a revised edition of “Self-Help” -- the first book manufactured completely in Japan using Western-style bookbinding -- an advance that was made possible by the development of heavy paper. The book lifted the spirits of the Japanese people as they battled the confusion of a new era, and became a best seller. Further developments in printing technology then gave rise to a boom in the launching of new magazines.
Shueisha grew larger primarily through printing books and magazines, and merged with Nisshin Printing Co., Ltd. to form Dainippon Printing Co., Ltd.
|1876||Founding of Shueisha, the predecessor of Dainippon Printing, at 2 Ginza 4-chome, in Tokyo *1|
|1877||Printing of revised edition of “Self-Help” by Samuel Smiles (translated into Japanese by Masanao Nakamura), the first book printed in Japan using Western-style bookbinding *2|
|1882||Began casting and selling printing type *3|
|1886||Built First Plant, in Tokyo’s Ichigaya district *4|
|1898||Entered the field of certificate printing, with the printing of temporary certificates representing construction bonds issued by the Osaka Municipal Chikko Office|
|1910||Near completion of DNP’s original Shueitai font|
|1916||Began offset printing|
|1923||Moved the head office to Tokyo’s Ichigaya district after the original one (in the Ginza district) was burnt in the Great Kanto Earthquake|
|1925||Received order to print 740,000 copies of the inaugural edition of Kodansha’s “King,” a general-interest magazine published by Kodansha, which became a top seller *5|
|1935||Changed company name to Dainippon Printing Co., Ltd. following merger with Nisshin Printing Co., Ltd.|
|1944||Launched the Technical Research Laboratory, the forerunner of today's Research and Development Center|
Tokyo was devastated by fire in World War II, but the Ichigaya district where DNP’s First Plant was located narrowly escaped damage.
With the end of the war, a new era once again demanded that information be conveyed by means of the printed word. Publishing companies began issuing weekly magazines, which only newspaper companies had been equipped to print in the past. DNP beefed up the facilities at its Ichgaya plant in order to support this trend and allow publishing companies to issue magazines.
Also during this period, DNP came out with its “Five-year Reconstruction Plan.” The company entered the fields of paper containers, flexible packaging, building materials, business forms and electronics, in addition to its main business of printing, and soared to the top of the printing industry.
|1945||Began printing “Time,” a weekly magazine published by Time-Life International Ltd.|
|1946||Began printing new Bank of Japan notes after being designated to do so by Japanese Ministry of Finance *6|
|1949||Listed shares on Tokyo Stock Exchange|
Enokicho Plant switched to printing securities certificates after it stopped printing paper money
|1950||Established paper container plant in Kyoto and entered the paper containers field|
|1951||Announced five-year reconstruction plan aimed at rebuilding the company, which had been exhausted by labor disputes|
Osaki Plant reopened after being dedicated to the production of paper containers *7
Begin specialized printing on materials such as vinyl, cellophane, and cloth; entered the flexible packaging field
|1952||Received orders to produce boxes for Hikari and Peace brand cigarettes|
Succeeded in printing decorative laminate for melamine boards; entered the decorative materials field
|1955||Used DNP’s original Shueitai font to print the first edition of “Kojien,” Japan's most authoritative dictionary|
Installed two-color form rotary rubber letterpress at Enokicho Plant; entered the business forms field
|1956||Printed the inaugural edition of “Shukan Shincho,” the first weekly magazine issued by a publishing company *8|
|1957||Opened the Oji Plant, specializing in flexible packaging|
|1958||Succeeded in producing prototypes of shadowmasks for color televisions and entered the electronics field *9|
Printed bags for Nisshin Foods’ chicken ramen noodles
|1959||Established Dai Nippon Photomechanical Engineering Co., Ltd. (now DNP”s Kamifukuoka Plant)
Became the leader of the Japanese printing industry in terms of sales and profits
Succeeded in producing prototypes of photomasks for semiconductor production
|1961||Succeeded in printing directly onto copper plate for the first time in Japan|
In 1963, DNP introduced a new structure whereby business and manufacturing units that addressed the same product field began to work together as distinct business divisions, with corporate directors assigned responsibility for managing specific divisions. This gave DNP a management system that could successfully steer the wide variety of businesses in which the company engaged. DNP was able to overcome the effects of the oil crisis of 1973, which acted like a sudden brake on Japan’s rapidly growing economy, because it had been quick to foresee the advent of the information era and had improved production efficiency by introducing computerized typesetting, and because the company had taken steps to improve its management practices. Also during this period, DNP actively expanded overseas.
DNP worked at creating a corporate structure that made the most of all of its capacities -- sales, technology, and planning -- in order to ride out this period of slow growth.
|1963||Established Hokkaido Beverages Co., Ltd. (currently Hokkaido Coca-Cola Bottling Co., Ltd.)|
Established Sagami Yoki Co., Ltd. to manufacture metal tubes for Lion brand toothpaste
|1964||Opened Hong Kong representative office|
Began manufacturing 16-pin lead frames that transmit electronic signals and support semiconductors chips.
|1965||Developed gravure technique for printing on cloth|
|1968||Finished construction of Yokohama Plant, specializing in paper containers|
Established Creative Design Center to strengthen design and planning functions (renamed “CDC Operations” in 1970) *10
Established New York representative office
|1969||Established representative offices in Sydney and Frankfurt|
|1970||Established Dai Nippon Printing (Europa) GmbH in Dusseldorf|
|1972||Established Dai Nippon Gitakarya (now P.T. Dai Nippon Printing Indonesia) in Indonesia.|
Established CTS Dai Nippon and commercialized computerized typesetting in Japan. *11
Completed construction of Warabi Plant in Saitama Prefecture, specializing in business forms
|1973||Established Sayama Plant, specializing in paper cups *12
Established Tsuruse Plant, specializing in printing of decorative materials
Established Nara Plant, specializing in business forms
Became the world’s largest comprehensive printing company
Established framework for mass production of magnetic plastic cards
|1974||Established DNP (America) Inc.
Introduced “Curlfit” technology for printing on curved surfaces
|1975||Established Manufacturing Technology Laboratory (now called “Manufacturing Technology Integration Laboratory”)|
|1976||Established DNP (Australia) Pty. Ltd.
Developed technology for aseptically filling single-portion packages of Snow Brand Milk Products Co. Ltd.’s coffee whitener
|1978||Developed large, three-dimensional holograms|
Yoshitoshi Kitajima became president in 1979 and faced a harsh economic environment in the aftermath of the second oil crisis. Right after he assumed the presidency, Mr. Kitajima announced to all DNP employees his intention to implement three key management policies: 1) Improve management efficiency, 2) Bolster communication, and 3) Devise and promote a medium-term business plan. He asked DNP's workers to all pull together in order to overcome the difficult period.
In 1981, DNP set about strengthening the company under the motto “Take on the future.” The goal of 1 trillion yen in net sales that was set at that time was achieved in the fiscal term ended March 1991. This period represented yet another step forward, from comprehensive printing company to information processing company.
|1979||Yoshitoshi Kitajima became president and announced new management policies.|
|1980||Established our Packaging Laboratory, Business Forms Laboratory, and Decorative Materials Laboratory|
|1981||Began development of fusion-type thermal transfer ribbons *14|
|1982||Became the first printing company to exhibit at DRUPA ‘82, Dusseldorf’s comprehensive international printing equipment trade fair
Established Electronic Components Laboratory and Image Processing Technology Laboratory
Developed carrier tape for storing and transporting precision electronic components; entered the “Industrial Supplies” field *15
|1983||Developed “Thermoject” technology for simultaneous injection molding and printing
Completed construction of Kuki Plant in Saitama Prefecture, for printing of publications
Developed re-writable smart cards *16
Produced the third edition of Kojien dictionary using computerized typesetting, for illustrations as well as for text
|1984||Equipped Kuki Plant with facilities for making fine-pitch shadow masks
Developed large-size projection screens for high-definition televisions
Succeeded at mass production of holograms using thermal transfer printing technology
|1985||Developed read-only optical cards with large memory capacities
Produced the world’s first dictionary on CD-ROM: the Trilingual Dictionary of Science and Engineering *17
Completed construction of our Central Research Institute’s Kashiwa Laboratory
Developed production technology for color filters used in LCDs
|1986||Developed transparent holograms *18
Opened Ginza Graphic Gallery (ggg) in Tokyo's Ginza district (the gallery was renovated in 1991) *19
|1987||Developed technology for direct printing of high-definition images|
For Japan, 1989 marked the end of the turbulent Showa Era, the reign of Emperor Hirohito. From the beginning of the Heisei Era that followed it, a string of new information technologies were introduced, including satellite communications, high-definition television, and widespread use of the Internet. In an address at the 1991 Comprint International Conference, DNP President Kitajima noted that although DNP has been refining its technologies for expressing and processing information in the form of printed media recent changes in information communication were among the factors behind the reshaping of world markets.
DNP was quick to computerize its operations. Positioning ourselves as an "information communication provider,” we quickly developed technologies for handling a variety of new types of media, including electronic books, CD-ROMs, DVDs, and high-definition systems. The company also built a framework for acquiring expertise in these areas.
|1989||Delivered first version of DNP’s “High-definition Gallery” image display system to Gifu Prefecture’s Museum of Fine Arts *20
Established DNP Denmark A/S to manufacture and sell rear projection TV screens
Established Information Media Supplies Operations to manufacture functional supplies related to bar codes, ink ribbons, and ID photographs
|1990||Acquired controlling share of Singapore's Tien Wah Press (Pte.) Ltd.
Established DNP (Singapore) Pte. Ltd.
|1991||Completed construction of Ono Plant in Hyogo Prefecture, for publications and commercial printing
Established Dai Nippon Printing Co. (UK) Ltd. in London
Completed construction of Information Media Supplies Operations' Okayama Plant
Opened "ddd gallery" in Dojima, Osaka
|1992||Instituted “DNP Group Corporate Pledge”|
|1993||Completed construction of Mihara Plant for manufacture of shadowmasks and rear projection TV screens|
|1994||Completed Otone Plant in Saitama Prefecture, specializing in LCD color filters
Launched DNP web site *21
|1995||Established Center for Contemporary Graphic Art (CCGA) in Sukagawa, Fukushima Prefecture *22
Started operating Concord Plant in the US, specializing in information media supplies
Invested in Vietnam reforestation joint venture with Oji Paper Co., Ltd. and Sojitz Corp. *23
Launched "Media Galaxy," a comprehensive/ full-service website design, hosting, and management service
Completed Tanabe Plant in Kyoto Prefecture, specializing in paper cartons for liquids
|1996||Established C&I (Communication and Information) Operations to propose and develop information media-related solutions
Developed new technology for manufacturing electrodes for lithium-ion rechargeable batteries
Started up production base for flexibie packaging materials at Izumizaki Plant in Fukushima Prefecture
|1998||Opened RMN (Reunion des Musées Nationaux or French national art museums association) Image Archive|
Completed construction of DNP Graphica Co., Ltd. in Tochigi Prefecture, specializing in general and commercial printing
Established Dai Nippon Printing (Taiwan) Co., Ltd. (now DNP Taiwan Co., Ltd.) to sell electronic components
|1999||Began operating DNP Data Techno Co., Ltd.’s Ushiku Plant in Ibaraki Prefecture, specializing in plastic cards|
Reorganized Micro Products Operations and established Display Components Operations and Semiconductor Components Operations
Completed Information Media Supplies Operations’ Okayama Plant for manufacturing thermal transfer ribbons used in fax machines
Launched IC tag project and began developing IC tags *24
Developed ultra-high density multi-layered substrates for use in BGA/MCM semiconductor packages; entered the build-up wiring board business *25
|2000||Established DT Fine Electronics Co., Ltd. as a joint venture with Toshiba Corp. (with DNP investing 65%)|
Established IPS (Information Processing Solutions) Operations, entailing information processing and manufacturing related to smart cards and invoices
Established Internet Data Center *26
Established Dai Nippon Printing (Korea) Co., Ltd. to sell electronic components
6. Contributing to Emergently Evolving Society (2001 to the present)
In 2001, we unveiled the “DNP Group’s 21st Century Vision,” which cited contribution to emergently evolving society as our management concept. We aim to contribute to the development of emergently evolving society through our business vision, which we call “P&I solutions." In other words, our goal is to combine printing and information technologies with the knowledge, experience, and expertise that we have accumulated over the years in order to offer appropriate solutions to problems faced by corporate clients and consumers.
In 2006, we completed construction of the DNP Gotanda Building as a base for promoting our solutions business. In addition, we have actively promoted mergers and acquisitions in order to accelerate growth in our existing businesses. As of March 2009, DNP Group employees numbered over 40,000 worldwide.
|2001||Succeeded in developing a flexible organic EL display *27
Commemorated the 125th anniversary of DNP's founding by announcing the "DNP Group’s 21st Century Vision” *28
Changed the name of DNP America Inc. to DNP America, LLC
Established DNP Electronics America LLC to manufacture and sell projection TV screens in the US
Established DAP Technology Co., Ltd., a joint venture with Asahi Glass Co., Ltd., to produce PDP back panels in Kitakyushu City
Launched silicon micro-machine processing service on contract basis
|2002||Established Industrial Supplies Operations and transferred the lithium-ion rechargeable battery electrodes division to it from Information Media Supplies Operations
Established DNP's first in-house venture business, CP Design Consulting Co., Ltd., which helps client companies create personal data protection systems and implement employee training
Established DNP Industrial Supplies Co., Ltd. (now DNP Optomaterials Co., Ltd.)
Established DNP Photomask Europe S.p.A to produce photomasks in Italy
Invested in Advanced Colortech Inc., a manufacturer of LCD color filters
|2003||Established Maison des Musées de France (MMF), jointly with the French national art museums association (Réunion des Musées Nationaux), in Tokyo's Ginza district *29
Developed materials for solar battery modules; expanded into the energy field *30
Established Compagnie de Découpe de l'Ouest (CDO SAS), a joint venture with France-based Sagem SA, to produce thermal transfer ink ribbons
Established DNP IMS France SAS
|2004||Established DNP France SAS
Consolidated information communication-related businesses in the Kansai region and formed Information Communications Kansai Operations
Established the Information Communication Research and Development Center and the Advanced Industrial Supplies Laboratory (now the Opto-Materials Laboratory)
A joint effort with Tokyo Medical and Dental University succeeded in forming capillary blood vessel patterns, marking DNP's expansion into the regenerative medicine field *31
Established DNP Hokkaido Co., Ltd. and DNP Tohoku Co., Ltd.
Established DNP Display Technology Taiwan Co., Ltd. to sell color filters
|2005||Established DNP International Trading (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. and began sales activities
Established Nano Science Research Center for research and development of materials and processes as well as for product analysis
Held a groundbreaking ceremony for the Kamiya Solutions Center, a printing and manufacturing base
Completed transfer of various divisions in the Osaka/Kyoto region to the Namba SS Building
Reorganized DNP Group businesses in western Japan and established DNP Nishinihon, K.K.
Began operating Kurosaki Plant, manufacturing LCD color filters in Kitakyushu
|2006||Acquired photography-related businesses from Konica Minolta Holdings, Inc.
Established DNP Photo Imaging Co., Ltd., DNP Photo Marketing Co., Ltd., and DNP ID Imaging Co., Ltd.
Renamed Industrial Supplies Operations “Opto-Materials Operations” and DNP Industrial Supplies Co., Ltd. “DNP Optomaterials Co., Ltd.”
Established DNP Color Techno Kameyama Co., Ltd. to manufacture LCD color filters at Sharp Corp.'s Kameyama Plant No. 2
Renamed Industrial Supplies Operations “Lifestyle Materials Operations” with an eye toward expanding the business
Established DNP Lifestyle Materials Marketing Co., Ltd.
Completed construction of the DNP Gotanda Building as a base for promoting the DNP Group's solutions business *32
Opened the “Louvre - DNP Museum Lab” inside the DNP Gotanda Building, as a venue for exploring new ways to appreciate the Louvre Museum’s artworks by making use of DNP's cutting-edge imaging technologies
Celebrated the 130th anniversary of DNP's founding
|2007||Formed capital alliance with TRC Inc., a provider of library operation services
Formed operational and capital tie-ups with Maruzen Co., Ltd., becoming Maruzen’s primary shareholder
Developed Japan's first domestically produced packaging for Japanese-style space food *33
|2008||Consolidated DNP ID Imaging Co., Ltd. DNP Photo Marketing Co., Ltd., and DNP PrintRush Co., Ltd. to form DNP Fotolusio Co., Ltd.
Established the DNP Foundation for Cultural Promotion
Increased DNP's stake in TRC Inc., making it a consolidated subsidiary
|2009||Established Energy Systems Operations|