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History

1881

Kintaro Hattori

Kintaro Hattori establishes the K. Hattori (watch and clock retail and repair store).
Earning the trust of foreign trading companies, the business expands greatly

1892

1890swall clocks

Building on the success of the retail business, Seikosha is established and commences manufacturing of wall clocks.

1894

clock tower

The company moves to the corner of Ginza 4-chome and builds a store with a clock tower

1895

Timekeeper

Manufacturing of the company's first pocket watch, the Timekeeper, commences.
By persisting in the pocket watch business, despite continuing losses, the company eventually corners the market.

1900s

1905

Distributors established in Shanghai and Hong Kong.

1913

1910sLaurel

Anticipating a shift away from pocket watches, the company launches Japan's first wristwatch, the Laurel.

1923

1920sthe company launches Japan's first watch

Despite losing all its factories and stores to the Great Kanto Earthquake in September, the company recommences operations in November. The company replaces all watches that were held for repair and destroyed in the disaster with brand new watches free of charge, thereby gaining the firm trust of the public.

1924

Launch of the first Seiko brand watch.

Launch of the first Seiko brand watch.

1932

1930sclock tower

Completion of the current clock tower on Ginza 4-chome (Wako main building).

1937

Daini Seikosha

Daini Seikosha (now Seiko Instruments Inc.) established.

1940s

1947

Retail division separates to become Wako Co., Ltd.

1949

Listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

1950s

1959

The Suwa factory becomes independent and forms Suwa Seikosha Co., Ltd. (now Seiko Epson Corporation).

1960

1960sLaunching of the Grand Seiko

Launching of the Grand Seiko, achieving the world's highest standard in accuracy.

1964

official timer

Official timer of the Tokyo Olympics.
Seiko later serves as official timer of 5 other Olympic Games (Sapporo, Barcelona, Lillehammer, Nagano, Salt Lake City).

1968

Geneva Observatory Competition

Seiko takes the top ranking for mechanical watches at the Geneva Observatory Competition.

1968

Launching of the world's first quartz wall clock

Launching of the world's first quartz wall clock for home use.

1968

Hattori (H.K.) Ltd. (currently Seiko Hong Kong Ltd) is established in Hong Kong, after which local corporations are established in succession around the world.

1969

Quartz Astron

Launching of the Quartz Astron, the world's first quartz watch.

1971

1970sKiyoko Nakayama

Kiyoko Nakayama* becomes the first female Contemporary Master Craftsman.
Since then, there have been 26 employees designated as Contemporary Master Craftsmen.
*Of Suwa Seikosha Co., Ltd. (now Seiko Epson Corp.)

1973

6-digit LCD watch.

Launching of the world's first 6-digit LCD watch.

1977

Kazuo Takeoka wins the WorldSkills Competition.
Since then, there have been 7 employees winning this competition.
*Of Suwa Seikosha Co., Ltd. (now Seiko Epson Corp.)

1978

Masahide Nakazawa  wins the national watch repairing contest.
Since then, there have been 7 employees winning this competition.
*Of Suwa Seikosha Co., Ltd. (now Seiko Epson Corp.)

1984

1980sMullion Clock

Installation of the Mullion Clock, Japan's first large-scale marionette clock, sparking a national boom in marionette clocks.

1985

automated ordering system

Launching of the world's first automated ordering system for the restaurant industry.

1987

IAAF World Championships in Athletics  in Rome

Seiko serves as official timer of the IAAF World Championships in Athletics  in Rome.
Thereafter, Seiko continues to serve as official timer of the IAAF World Championship.

1990s

1993

Seiko Time Systems Inc. established.

1999

Spring Drive watch

Launching of the world's first Spring Drive watch.

2004

2000sShizukuishi Watch Studio

Opening of the Shizukuishi Watch Studio, a fully-integrated manufacturing facility for mechanical watches.

2005

Development of mercury-free silver oxide batteries.

2005

Medal with Yellow Ribbon

Mamoru Sakurada is awarded the Medal with Yellow Ribbon for watch assembly.
Since then, there have been 6 employees awarded the Medal with Yellow Ribbon.

2005

Seiko NPC Corporation established.

2007

Seiko serves as official timer of the 1st Tokyo Marathon, and continues to serve as official timer thereafter.

2009

Seiko Instruments Inc

Business merger with Seiko Instruments Inc.

2012

2010sSeiko Astron

Launching of the Seiko Astron, the world's first GPS solar watch.

2013

Seiko Solutions Inc. established.

2014

The Grand Seiko Hi-Beat GMT

The Grand Seiko Hi-Beat GMT wins the Petite Aiguille prize at the Grand Prixd'Horlogerie de Genève.

2017

IAAF World Championships in Athletics in London

Seiko serves as official timer of the IAAF World Championships in Athletics in London.

Related information

The Seiko Museum

The Seiko Museum

The Seiko Museum