Gunze’s History of 124 Years

Gunze has been consistently committed to resolving social issues by offering products and services tailored to the needs of the times. Gunze seeks to establish a “one-of-a-kind” position in its respective fields.

silksilk

1896~

Establishment of a silk manufacturing company to contribute to the local community through the development of local industry

When Tsurukichi Hatano, the founder of Gunze, came to know the situation of the local silk farming industry, he was determined to do his part in improving the structure of the industry. Aware of the urgent need to improve the quality of Kyoto Prefecture’s silk worm cocoons and raw silk, both of which had reputations for poor quality, Hatano concentrated on employee training based on his belief that “Good people make good silk yarn,“ thereby making the production of fine-quality products possible.

1896: Gunze Silk Manufacturing Co., Ltd. established 1917: Gunze school for female employees established1896: Gunze Silk Manufacturing Co., Ltd. established 1917: Gunze school for female employees established

1896:
Gunze Silk Manufacturing Co., Ltd. established
1900:
Gunze obtained a Gold medal at the Paris World's Fair
1902:
Gunze entered into exclusive supply and distribution agreement with Skinner Trading Company in the U.S.
1909:
Gunze started positive volume trading
1917:
Gunze school for female employees established

Stockings and Knitted InnerwearStockings and Knitted Innerwear

1930~

Improving people’s lifestyles through rapid expansion of apparel products (hosiery and knitted innerwear) after the end of WWII

The development of rayon in the United States caused a substantial drop in the prices of silk. While searching for secondary processed products that could compensate for the decline in silk sales, Gunze launched the production of full-fashion silk stockings. After World War II, Gunze shifted its focus to the production of nylon stockings, helping promote the spread of stockings among Japanese women through reasonable pricing. Gunze also started the production of knitted innerwear soon after the end of the war. In pursuit of “Golden quality for silver prices.” Gunze explored the “why” as the company sought to ensure superb quality for its products. As a result, Gunze knitted innerwear was coined “national innerwear.”

1934: Full-fashion stocking production launched1934: Full-fashion stocking production launched

1946: Knitted innerwear production launched1946: Knitted innerwear production launched

1933:
Gunze Silk Corporation established in New York
1934:
Full-fashion stocking production launched
1946:
Knitted innerwear production launched
1954:
Thread production launched at Tsuyama Factory

Apparel BusinessApparel Business

1960~

Tackling the challenge as a technology-oriented company through the development of applications for new materials

In response to the rapid growth of the petrochemical industry and expanding consumption of plastics in Japan, Gunze made a foray into the plastic film field. Gunze started with the production of packaging films for its stockings, followed by the development of shrink film tubing in 1962. Afterwards, Gunze developed various new products and technologies by using fluororesin and high-performance resin processing. This helped Gunze expand into the fields of engineering plastics and electronic components. Today, Gunze’s functional solutions business is creating new B2B solutions for a diversity of applications.

Tackling the challenge as a technology-oriented company through the development of applications for new materialsTackling the challenge as a technology-oriented company through the development of applications for new materials

1962:
Plastic film business launched
1965:
Ladies' innerwear production launched at Kurayoshi Factory
1967:
Company renamed Gunze Limited
1968:
Pantyhose production launched at Ayabe Factory
1973:
Landscaping and greening business launched
1976:
Gunze set up "Company motto"
1983:
Engineering plastics business launched
1984:
Gunze Sports Co., Ltd. established
1985:
Electronic components business launched
1985:
Medical Development Department established

1985: Medical Development Department established1985: Medical Development Department established

1985~

Presenting new, enriched lifestyle culture through diversified apparel products and multifaceted business operations

As consumer preferences and purchasing patterns diversified, Gunze expanded its apparel product lineups to meet a wider range of consumer requirements. Gunze’s apparel products attracted many loyal customers thanks to their innovative functions and fashionable appeal. At the same time, Gunze redeveloped the premise of its former factory to open a commercial facility. This also helped Gunze create a new lifestyle culture in terms of both clothing and housing.

Presenting new, enriched lifestyle culture through diversified apparel products and multifaceted business operationsPresenting new, enriched lifestyle culture through diversified apparel products and multifaceted business operations

1985: Medical Development Department established1985: Medical Development Department established

1985: Medical Development Department established1985: Medical Development Department established

1985:
“Tsukashin” shopping complex opened as a center to introduce new lifestyle culture
1989:
SOZ division established
1996:
Gunze Museum opened
1998:
“BODYWILD” boxer brief debut sets a new trend in men’s underwear Electronic components division established Engineering plastic division established
2003:
Tsukashin Town Create Limited Established
2007:
Gunze Engineering Limited established

Functional Solutions BusinessFunctional Solutions Business

2010~

Creating new value by combining the expanding functional solutions business with the apparel and lifestyle creation businesses

Against the backdrop of the rapid aging of the Japanese population and increasing health consciousness, Gunze is concentrating on developing new products designed to create new value in the areas of apparel, plastic films, medical materials, and sports clubs. This is intended to help people enhance their quality of life (QOL). In the sports club business as well, Gunze sports clubs initiated new programs in collaboration with local communities to help lengthen healthy lifespans.

2016:“Medicure” soft innerwear suitable for postoperative patients and those with sensitive skin2016:“Medicure” soft innerwear suitable for postoperative patients and those with sensitive skin

2018: Gunze Sports Suita Kento opened in the commercial complex named  “VIERRA Kishibe Kento” in Kita-Osaka Health and Medical City (Kento) 2018: Gunze Sports Suita Kento opened in the commercial complex named  “VIERRA Kishibe Kento” in Kita-Osaka Health and Medical City (Kento)

In the landscaping and greening business, Gunze constructed a Gingko tree promenade along Midosuji Avenue in Osaka.

2010:
Medical Division Established
2014:
QOL Research Institute Established
Ayabe Gunze Square opened
2016:
Jeans Casual Dan Limited acquired
2017:
Gunze Medical Japan Limited established
2018:
Gunze Plastics & Engineering of Vietnam Limited established
2019:
Medical U & A Limited acquired

Products and services designed to help improve the quality of lifeProducts and services designed to help improve the quality of life

2021

“CAN 20” Medium-term Management Plan

Set the health and medical-related fields that help improve the quality of life of people as the core source of growth, and have each business establish a “one-of-a-kind” position in the industry in its respective field through focus and concentration.

Key Concept Focus and Concentration
Period First Phase: FY2014 through FY2016
Second Phase: FY2017 through FY2021

Aggressive promotion of three pivotal strategiesAggressive promotion of three pivotal strategies

Changes in product portfolio

Changes in product portfolio

Enlarge figure

Changes in product portfolio