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Company Profile

Welcome.
Our challenge is the creation of new porcelain vessels that enrich lives of our customers. Minoyaki flourished in the Azuchimomoyama era, giving rise to the "Shino" and "Oribe" teaware which is representative of Japanese culture. Inheriting this rich tradition, we at Maebata Inc. have continued to pursue the new potential and value of porcelain vessels. We are delighted with how well our products have been received in Japan and all over the world.
The purpose of a "vessel" is to hold something. It may hold the richness of life, or it may be used to convey deep emotions. We work with a variety of vessels, ranging from Japanese and western style china, designer collections and imported brands. We also put much effort into providing information. This is because we care deeply about vessels themselves and the intangibles which they give birth to such as the culture of cuisine and communication among people.
Our mission as a company is to offer our customers vessels that enrich their lives. The joy our products bring to our customers would inspire us to be ever more creative in our future efforts.

Name Maebata Inc.
Address
  • Head Office
    2-12, Maebata-cho, Tajimi-city, Gifu, Japan, 507-8701
    General Affairs Department /
    TEL.(+81) 572-24-1111 FAX.(+81) 572-22-0962
    Sales Department /
    TEL.(+81) 572-21-1111 FAX.(+81) 572-23-8352
    International Trade Division /
    TEL.(+ 81) 572-21-1117 FAX.(+81) 572-21-1116
    Email : a_okahashi@maebata.co.jp (English)
  • Tokyo
    5-10-8, Minami-Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo,Japan, 107-0062
    TEL.(+81) 3-5466-7771 FAX.(+81) 3-5466-7888
  • Osaka
    2-10-12, Minami-Senba, Chuo-ku,Osaka,Japan, 542-0081
    TEL.(+81) 6-6258-4080 FAX.(+81) 6-6258-4081
  • Xiamen (Maebata City Inc.)
    Room341 Baoshui Plaza,Xiangyu Road,Xiamen,Fujian,China 361004
    TEL.(+86) 592-565-8891 FAX.(+86)592-565-8810
Establishment April 8th, 1946
Capital 49.12 million yen
President Yoshio Sakazaki
Line of Business Manufacture and sales of Japanese and western style tableware and interior
Branches Head Office (Tajimi), Tokyo, Osaka, Xiamen(China)
Customers Domestic / Major Department Stores and Specialty Stores
Overseas / Europe, USA, South East Asia
Main Bank Juroku Bank, The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ,Ltd., Tono Shinkin Bank
Affiliated Company
  • Maebata Commerce Inc.
  • Maebata City Inc.
  • Maebata Development Co., LTD.
  • Kani Driving School Inc.
  • "WANOMA" Japanese Café & General Goods.
    (Location / Central Japan International Airport)
  • "RAKERU" Omelettes Dining Restaurant, 4 Restaurants.
Educational foundation Maebata Nursery School

Summary

I. New method revitalizes traditional industry

Everyone in Japan knows that Minoyaki is an ancient Japanese style of porcelain. It continues to be an important industry in the Mino region. It is also notable that while Japan has a variety of regional porcelains, Minoyaki were in particular become part of everyday life for everyone in the mid-17th century, spreading later to the masses. Currently accounting for 60% of the traditional and western style tableware produced domestically, Minoyaki ware has became a familiar part of our lives.
Maebata Inc.. was founded in 1946 at Tajimi City, a center of Minoyaki distribution, under the name Sakazaki Shohten. Taking advantage of the postwar shortage of goods and military procurement in Korean peninsula, we succeeded in expanding our sales routes and volume. The stable foundation and sensible management provided by incorporation has allowed us to develop further. Using Taimi distinctive decorative and design technology, we are experts at enhancing the pieces fired by porcelain makers into creative finished products.

II. The switch to mass production

Having reached a certain level of department as new techniques were introduced, Minoyaki was swept with a wave of mechanization around 1955. The volume of Minoyaki being distributed in the market increased sharply owing to the "mechanization." As a result, everything that had long depend on traditional methods done by hand, from mold making to enamel designs, began to change.
At Maebata Inc., the introduction of a fuel-oil tunnel kiln for glazing on designs with the silkscreen method resulted in around-the-clock high-efficiency production. Then, from around 1965, the introduction of the in-glaze method developed at the Tajimi City Pottery Design And Technical Center enabled the production of higher-quality porcelain products at a low cost. However, in the realm of embellishment, the "hand painting" of seasoned artisans is still very much alive. Indeed, having an experienced artisan do the painting frequently results in a better balance of line thickness and color and ends up being faster.

III. Our company brand, "Kozangama"

Confident of our ability to develop original products with our in-house designers, in order to cope with increasing demand and the growing trend of product branding, we introduced our own company brand, "Kozangama". It has created quite a name for itself among Japanese porcelain, becoming broadly popular overseas though our European outlet. Other brands we have created to suit the sensibilities of customers include "Jusho" and "Kiyuan" From around 1975, designer collection brands began to appear in the realm of tableware. By adding the power of designers from outside the company, we too expanded the variety of our products. This also served to as stimulus to improve the development of in-house design, resulting in a synergistic effect on "monozukuri". Beginning with our "Jun Ashida Collection" tie-up, we formed alliances with a number of world- class companies, including LANCEL, renoma and Figaro. Building on the foundation of our own brand, the variety of top brand licensed every year.
Our "Alice in Wonderland" tableware is one of leading development strategy of making every effort to keep up with the trends and customer needs of a constantly changing marketplace. The critically acclaimed "Rose of Asia" of our "Gokusai" series, which appeared in a large number of leading- department and specialty stores in Europe, is a good example of the high esteem in which our products are held.

IV. Trade fairs, exhibitions, advance shows

From around 1955 we switched from sample sales to product catalogue sales, and began a mail order sales, sending out products monthly to members, 12 times for single series. Our holding of the first independent porcelain trade fair in Tajimi (1962) and a joint Seto, Mino and Bizen trade fair (1970) provided tremendous boosts to sales and customer cultivation. Now, in addition to our twice-yearly "Mino-Bizen-Seto Porcelain Exhibit", we hold previews two months in advance in our main office showroom to keep our production in tune with our clients needs.

V. Cultivating a new company image

In 1987, construction of our new main office building was completed. Known as the "m" building, it is where we held our advance shows and has become the new space for our "vessels". The main consideration was how to put the "vessels" on center stage. After much deliberation, we decided that unadorned concrete should be the basic interior, and that it should be accented with natural Materials, stone, glass and wood. The display space is supplemented with small objects, so that a visitor experiences the "vessels" in spaces with a variety of images proceeding from the first though the fourth floor.

VI. Offering vessels which enrich life

Particularly in the case of tableware, there has been a shift away from mere functionality to an awareness of the important role such items can play in making our lives more enjoyable. In terms of the enjoyment all people share at mealtime, tableware plays both a main and a supporting role at the dinner table. Just as people change curtains and table cloths in keeping with the season, we can enjoy different tableware for each season. A beautiful new cup could do much enrichment of drinking a cup of tea. We hope that the tableware we make at Maebata Inc. contributes to such enjoyment.

Contributions to the local area

Our affiliated business include the Kani Driving School (Inc.), Maebata Scholarship Foundation and Maebata Nursery School as our social welfare corporations. The driving school was established in 1967 at part of the land we had purchased as the site for our factory. We are proud of providing new drivers with sufficient education and training to help prevent accidents in a society experiencing rapid growth in the number of cars on the road. There was no driving school in Kani City when the school first opened. KDS was designated by the prefectural public safety committee and the city council, and in 1990 it has became an independent company.