Hitachi Limited, Japan

Hitachi Limited, Japan

Hitachi Ltd. Japan


1910; 107 years ago
Namihei Odaira

Chiyoda, Tokyo, Japan


Hitachi, Ltd. is a Japanese multinational company. Its headquarter situated in Chiyoda, Tokyo, Japan. The company was established in 1910. The founder of the company was Namihei Odaira. The key people of the company are Hiroaki Nakanishi (Chairman) and Toshiaki Higashihara (President and CEO). It is the parent company of the Hitachi Group and forms part of the DKB Group of companies.

Hitachi is a highly diversified company that operates eleven business segments: Information & Telecommunication Systems, Social Infrastructure, High Functional Materials & Components, Financial Services, Power Systems, Electronic Systems & Equipment, Automotive Systems, Railway & Urban Systems, Digital Media & Consumer Products, Construction Machinery and Other Components & Systems.

Hitachi ranked 38th in the 2012 Fortune Global 500 and 129th in the 2012 Forbes Global 2000. Hitachi has over 340,000 patent assignments, making them the company with the most patents assigned of all time.



1910 - 1960 :

Hitachi was founded by Namihei Odaira in 1910 in Ibaraki Prefecture.

Japan's first 5-horsepower induction motor, initially developed for use in copper mining, was the company's first product. In electric motors and electric power industry infrastructure, Hitachi soon became the domestic leader.

Odaira shifted headquarters to Tokyo in 1918. World War II and its aftermath distressed the company. Many of its factories were demolished by Allied bombing raids, and after the war, American occupational forces tried to separate Hitachi altogether. Founder Odaira was removed from the company. Hitachi and many other struggling Japanese industrial firms benefited from defense contracts offered by the American military. Meanwhile, Hitachi went public in 1949. In 1951 Hitachi created 6,500-kW Kaplan water turbine and 7,000-kVA AC generator, first umbrella-type generator made in Japan followed by the first large-scale cold strip mill  produced in Japan in 1954. Hitachi built the first DF90 diesel-electric engine to be built in Japan in 1956. Hitachi America, Ltd. was established in 1959 and a cubic-type refrigerator in 1960.


1961 - 1980 :

1961 Developed fully automatic washing machine and also Completed experimental nuclear reactor by then.Hitachi produced the first cars for the Shinkansen (Bullet Train)along with seat reservation system for Japanese National Railways and Manufactured monorail running between Haneda Airport and Hamamatsu-cho, Tokyo in 1964. Developed hybrid LSI,Completed HIDIC 100 electronic computer for control applications and a 300-m/min elevators for high-rise buildings by 1968.

Tested world's first optical transmission system successfully in 1976.Construction of Fugen advanced thermal converter reactor was completed by 1977.In 1978 Hitachi Completed world's first field emission electron microscope with record-high resolution and Experimental color camera with solid-state miniature image device developed. And in 1980 Completed 300-MW AC/DC converter for electricity link between Hokkaido and Honshu.


1981 - 2000s :

Hitachi Europe Ltd. established in 1982 and succeeded in world's first micro-level observation of magnetic field by the use of electron beam holography. In 1983 Developed air conditioner with scroll compressor. Hitachi Completed first improved standard BWR to be made in Japan in 1984, also started mass production of 256-kbit DRAMs. In 1988 company developed quadrupedal robot.

Hitachi Asia Pte. Ltd. established in 1989.Developed world's fastest superconductive computer, superconductive MR imaging equipment and Established two R&D centers in the U.S. and two laboratories in Europe.Hitachi launched very large-scale computer with the world's fastest processing speed at that time. Developed high-resolution TFT color liquid crystal display in 1990.

In August 2011, Hitachi entered talks with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries about a potential merger of the two companies, but the talks broke down and were suspended. In October 2012, Hitachi agreed to obtain the United Kingdom-based nuclear energy company Horizon Nuclear Power, which plans to construct up to six nuclear power plants in the UK, from E.ON and RWE for £700 million.

Hitachi and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries later  agreed to merge their thermal power generation businesses into a joint venture to be owned 65% by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and 35% by Hitachi, in November 2012. In February 2014, the joint venture started operations.


Logo and Brand

Hitachi made of two kanji characters: hi meaning “sun” and tachi meaning “rise”. The young company's national aspirations were conveyed by its original brand mark, which evoked Japan's imperial rising sun flag.


Popular Hitachi Products

Automotive systems

  • Car Information Systems
  • Drive Control
  • Electric Powertrain Systems
  • Engine Management Systems


Construction machinery


Social infrastructure and industrial systems

  • Elevators
  • Escalators
  • Industrial machinery and plants
  • Railway vehicles and systems


Subsidiaries and divisions

Current Divisions

  • Hitachi Communication Technologies America
    Hitachi Communication Technologies America provides communications products and services for the telecommunications, cable TV, utility, enterprise, industrial and other markets.

  • Hitachi Metals, Ltd.
    Among other things, Hitachi Metals supplies materials for aircraft engines and fuselage components (e.g. landing gear), along with finished components for same and other aerospace applications. It also supply materials, components and tools for the automotive and electronics industries.

  • Hitachi Plant Technologie
    Hitachi Plant Technologies, Ltd., along with its subsidiaries, engages in the design, development, manufacture, sale, servicing, and execution of social and industrial infrastructure machinery, mechatronics, air-conditioning systems, industrial plants, and energy plant equipment in Asia and internationally.



  • Hitachi Works
    Hitachi Works is the oldest member of the Hitachi Group and consists of three factories: Kaigan Works, Yamate Works, and Rinkai Works. Yamate Works, the oldest of the three factories, was founded in 1910 by Namihei Odaira as an electrical equipment repair and manufacturing facility. This facility was named Hitachi, after the Hitachi Mine near Hitachi, Ibaraki, and is regarded as the ancestral home of Hitachi, Ltd.


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