April 19, 2016,11:00 +0900(JST) Centennial of the Foundation of the Osaka Works
On the first Sunday of April every year, we hold the Inari Festival at each of our works, in order to pray for the safety and health of our staff members and the prosperity of our business. This year, at the Osaka Works, we held not only the festival, but also a ceremony to celebrate the centennial of the foundation of the works.
In the past few years, when we held the Inari Festival, although it was spring, cold weather always returned. This year, however, it was fortunately warm, and although the weather forecast had said that it would rain, it did not. Under the full bloom of cherry blossoms at the works, a Shinto ritual began at 9:30 a.m. at Takakura Inari Shrine. Afterwards, a ceremony was held at a different venue. The ceremony was attended by approximately 300 people, including those from public administrations, neighborhood associations, schools, subcontracting companies, and unions, as well as retirees of our company and other people who continually provide us with generous cooperation.
Our company was established in 1897, with a factory located in the area where the Osaka Municipal Wholesale Market is currently located. In step with the growth in demand, the company relocated and expanded the factory in 1916, and this was the forerunner of the present Osaka Works. Afterward, the plant prospered as a base for manufacturing power cables and other products underpinning social infrastructure, as well as a base for our research and development. At the end of last year, we launched a demonstration experiment of our redox flow battery system in Hokkaido; these batteries are manufactured at the Osaka Works.
The Osaka Works has not always enjoyed smooth sailing over the past century. Not only has it experienced ups and downs in its business, but the works have also undergone a wide variety of difficulties, such as flooding due to the Muroto Typhoon, and grave damage due to air raids during the Second World War. Nevertheless, we are now able to celebrate the works' 100th anniversary, and this is totally thanks to the understanding and cooperation of all those concerned, including the works' neighbors. I would like to express my sincere appreciation to all once again.
As our flag plant that has inherited Sumitomo's copper business and spirit, the Osaka Works needs to continue to earn trust from all of you and contribute to society. While speaking to many participants at the ceremony, I renewed my determination to achieve the mission.