Makky Kaylor performing

Makky Kaylor performing

I recently met an Asian American who was more familiar with Yamaha home entertainment and outdoor recreational products than their musical instruments.  When I pointed out that the company logo was comprised of tuning forks he had an “ah hah” moment. Yamaha has become synonymous with fun “all the way around” but music was their first and remains their deepest passion.

The manufacturing expertise developed by this piano maker has been focused on delivering the most consistent quality piano in the world.  It has been their passion but this passion didn’t manifest itself recently.  Yamaha specializes in recreational products of many kinds. That being said, the first thing the founder ever built was a reed organ and the first product ever mass produced was a piano! Take a peek at the benchmark history of the  largest instrument maker in the world.

1887

Torakusu Yamaha builds his first reed organ

1897

   Nippon Gakki Co., Ltd. (current Yamaha Corporation) is established with capital of 100,000 yen

1900

Begins production of upright pianos

1949

Lists its shares on Tokyo Stock Exchange

1954

   Establishes Yamaha Music School and holds pilot classes.
Produces its first HiFi player (audio product)

1955

   Establishes Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. (Splits off the motorcycle division)

1958

   Begins production of sports equipment
. Establishes first overseas subsidiary in Mexico

1959

Begins production of electronic organ

1960

Establishes Yamaha International Corporation (current Yamaha Corporation of America)

1962

Begins recreation business

1964

Begins production of lifestyle-related products

1965

Begins production of wind instruments

1966

     Yamaha Music Foundation is established
. Expands into Europe with the founding of Yamaha Europa GmbH, in West Germany

1968

Issues shares at market price for the first time in Japan

1971

Begins production of semiconductors

1987

     Changes company name to Yamaha Corporation to mark the 100th years in business

2002

     Establishes Yamaha Music & Electronics (China) Co., Ltd.
Establishes          Yamaha Music Holding Europe GmbH (current Yamaha Music Europe GmbH)

2005

Acquires Steinberg Media Technologies GmbH

2007

Establishes music entertainment business holding company

2008

Acquires L. Bösendorfer Klavierfabrik GmbH
 Acquires NEXO S.A.

2010

  Renews Yamaha Ginza Building, a complex including shopping area,   concert hall, music studio etc.
Transfers shares of the lifestyle-related   products subsidiary.
Completes integration of Japanese piano factories to Kakegawa

2012

    Completes integration of Japanese wind instrument factories to Toyooka
125th years in business (October 12th)

You can see from the impressive history of this well-managed company, who built its first upright piano in 1900 and made a reed organ before any other product, that music was at the source and was inspirational to this company. All the other fun, recreational stuff came later. As the tuning forks in the company logo remind us-music is at the heart of this company and that passion shows in the way they build all things.