On May 1, 2015, Denka celebrates its centennial.
Ever since its founding, Denka has created a wealth of products by applying its carbide manufacturing technology and pursued the ultimate in (Japanese-style craftsmanship) while changing its output in response to the needs of the times.
Denki Kagaku Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha (Denka) was established in 1915 around Hokkai Carbide Plant, which was set up by Dr.Tsuneichi Fujiyama in the city of Tomakomai, Hokkaido in 1912. At its start, it produced carbide and a nitrogenous lime (calcium cyanamide) fertilizer derived from carbide, by using the electricity from hydropower generation as energy to sinter limestone and coke
Dr. Tsuneichi Fujiyama, the pioneer of carbide industry in Japan
In 1902, Dr. Fujiyama became the first in Japan to successfully manufacture carbide, at a plant in Sankyozawa, outside the city of Sendai. He was also the first to introduce technology for manufacture of calcium cyanamide(nitrogenous limestone) from carbide into Japan, and opened the Hokkai Carbide Plant in the city of Tomakomai in 1912. His achievements had a tremendous influence on the subsequent growth of chemical industry in Japan.
Start of manufacture of carbide and calcium cyanamide
Denka's core technologies were sintering and electric furnace control technology applied in manufacture of carbide and nitriding technology applied in manufacture of calcium cyanamide. They were the driving forces for our subsequent product development.
1915: Denka Tomakomai Plant started operation
1916: Establishment of the Omuta Plant
1921:Establishment of the Omi Plant
Advance into the field of organic synthesis
Denka entered this field with a view to effective use of the acetylene gas from carbide production. Our commercialization of acetylene black in 1942 was followed by acetic acid, vinyl acetate, vinyl chloride, and other chemicals.
Period of core business expansion
Research in acetylene-based organic synthesis spawned all sorts of organic chemical products. We also moved into the field of synthetic resin and built it into the foundation of our business as a chemicals manufacturer. Born from effective use of limestone, our cement business eventually evolved into a business in creative special cement additives along with the deepening of our chemicals technology.
1949: Establishment of the Ofuna Plant
1951: Establishment of the Shibukawa Plant
Full-scale launch of the cement business
We built a plant on land next to the Omi Plant to start full-scale cement production using fine limestone that had not been useful for manufacturing carbide.
Advance into the petrochemicals business
We established a plant in the petrochemical complex in the city of Ichihara, Chiba Prefecture. We initiated production of styrene monomers, polystyrene resin, and other organic materials made from petroleum.
Successful domestic production of chloroprene rubber
We successfully commercialized Japan's first domestically produced chloroprene rubber, and began selling it in Japan and other countries under the brand DENKA Chloroprene.
1962: Establishment of the Chiba Plant and Central Research Institute
Sales of CSA and advance into the special cement additive business
We launched sales of CSA, an expansive cement additive to prevent cracks, in 1968.Targeting materials that could compensate for all the drawbacks of cement and concrete, we developed numerous creative products and became the top manufacturer of special cement additives.
1969: Establishment of the Isesaki Plant
Advance into the field of fine ceramics
In 1971, we began sales of fused silica and boron nitride based on application of the sintering technology we accumulated through our manufacture of carbide and calcium cyanamide (nitrogenous lime). We also developed various fine ceramics materials thereafter.
Period of speciality business expansion
We created advanced products by combining the inorganic and organic technologies accumulated over our long years of activity. Our group of heat-dissipation materials and products are at the center of our growth strategy in the field of electronic materials. Meanwhile, our research in the area of organic fine chemicals evolved into biotechnology research and led to our development of business in pharmaceuticals such as hyaluronic acid.
Development of high-performance adhesives
HARDLOC, our adhesive born from research into organic fine chemicals, was a landmark product and became synonymous with high-performance adhesives for industrial use of the two-part (main plus hardener agent) type.
Participation in pharmaceuticals business
Upon acquisition of the stock of Toshiba Chemical Co.,Ltd. (which later became Denka Seiken Co.,Ltd.), we began developing business in pharmaceuticals, including vaccines and clinical testing agents.
1980: Establishment of the Merbau Plant
Advance into the field of electronic materials (anti-heat products)
Developing Thermally Conductive Sheet, DENKA HITTPLATE, and DENKA AN PLATE in rapid succession, we brought out a diversity of products applying high-thermal-conductivity filler and organic fine chemical technology. We have built up product clusters that cannot be equaled by rivals.
Advance into the polymer processing business
We began producing biaxially oriented polystyrene sheet (BOPS) at our Chiba Plant.
Full-fledged business in functional resins
We put together an assortment of styrene-based functional resins consisting of transparent polymers, heat-resistant resins, and CLEAREN.
1989: Establishment of the Tuas Plant
1997: Establishment of the Seraya Plant
Launch of sales of spherical silica filler
We initiated sales of spherical silica filler, which now has the top share of the world market for filler for semiconductor sealing.
Start production of polystyrene in Singapore
We opened the Seraya Plant in Singapore to cultivate the world market for polystyrene.
Start of production of macromolcular sodium hyaluronate
We established a production method for macromolcular sodium hyaluronate based on an original fermentation process, and began producing an agent for functional improvement of joints made from this acid.
Advance into the living and environmental products business
We absorbed TOYO KAGAKU Co.,Ltd., which was established in 1949, and obtained a good assortment of distinctive products. We used them to begin developing business in lifestyle and environmental products, in keeping with our aim of contribution to people's lives and the global environment.
Denka launched the Denka100 management plan in 2007, laying out its basic business policies and setting numerical targets for business performance, while developing an operating base with the strength to last for the next 100 years.
Toward the next 100 years
2006: Establishment of the production base in Suzhou
Advance into the fluorescent substance business
Start of production of the sialon phosphor ALONBRIGHT.
World's biggest producer of chloroprene rubber
In a program of facility expansion, we completed construction of a plant boasting a production capacity of 100,000 tons, the highest in the world, and became the world's biggest producer of chloroprene rubber.