History of KUBOTA

Still Carrying on the Pioneering Spirit of the Founder, Gonshiro Kubota

Photo:Gonshiro KubotaGonshiro Kubota (1870–1959)

The First in Japan to Succeed in the Mass Production of Water Pipe

Kubota’s history began in February 1890, when the founder Gonshiro Kubota opened a metal casting business in Osaka at the age of 19. At the time, water borne diseases such as cholera were prevalent in Japan and water services were in need of urgent attention. Against the backdrop of many companies failing in the manufacture of water pipe, Gonshiro engaged in research maintaining the strong beliefs of “It can be done” and “Don’t be afraid of making mistakes.” Undergoing much hardship, he became the first in Japan to succeed in the mass production of iron water pipe in 1893, and built a business based on providing people with safe and secure drinking water.

Promoting the Mechanization of Agriculture Due to Post-War Food Shortage

Believing that "In the future, machines will replace shovels and hoes," Gonshiro began researching the mechanization of agriculture around 1935. In 1947, he succeeded in developing a cultivator to meet the expanding post-war food demand. This cultivator rapidly grew in popularity due to labor shortages in farming villages as a result of high economic growth. Developing tractors, combine harvesters, rice transplanters and other machinery one after another, Kubota has made a significant contribution to alleviating exhausting labor in agricultural work.

Pioneering Spirit Still Going Strong After Nearly 130 Years

Kubota contributes to society with products, technologies and services that resolve issues relating to food, water and the environment. This success derives from the spirit passed down from Gonshiro Kubota, who believed “For the prosperity of society, we need to put all of our efforts into creation,” and “Our products should be not only technically excellent, but also useful for the good of society.” The pioneering spirit of the founder Gonshiro Kubota remains strong in the hearts and minds of Kubota’s employees even today, nearly 130 years later.

From the corner of an old tenement house to the world

Possessing strengths in world-class quality, the Kubota Group is accelerating the development of its overseas business activities, including expanding its production, sales and procurement bases. Kubota will further enhance its global management, thereby continuing to grow as a corporate group that is needed by people around the world.

With the strong belief of "It can be done," you can achieve anything.


写真:Kubota’s place of origin around (now) 2-Chome, Nihonbashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka City (approx. 400 m northeast of the present Head Office)Kubota’s place of origin around (now) 2-Chome, Nihonbashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka City (approx. 400 m northeast of the present Head Office)

写真:Young Gonshiro Kubota (front center in photo)Young Gonshiro Kubota (front center in photo)

  • 1890
    Founded a casting manufacturer, Ode Imono (Ode Foundry)
  • 1893
    Began manufacturing cast iron pipe for supplying water
  • 1897
    Changed name to Kubota Tekko-jo (Kubota Iron Works)
  • 1939
    Company listed on stock exchange
  • 1947
    Developed cultivator
  • 1953
    Changed name from K.K. Kubota Tekko-jo to Kubota Tekko K.K.
  • 1960
    Developed and commercialized first Japanese riding tractor First Japanese company to receive and complete an order for an overseas water supply project
  • 1972
    Full-scale entry into U.S. tractor market
  • 1990
    Celebrated 100th year anniversary; Changed company name to Kubota Corporation
  • 2009
    Completed first Japanese-owned tractor production plant in Thailand
  • 2010
    Certified as an “Eco-First Company” by Japan’s Minister of the Environment
  • 2011
    Established regional headquarters in China and completed construction machinery plant
  • 2012
    Established global corporate philosophy—the Kubota Global Identity—and adopted a new brand statement logo, “For Earth, For Life”Acquired Kverneland AS of Norway and made it a subsidiary
  • 2014
    Established a large upland farming tractor manufacturing company in France
  • 2015
    Launched multipurpose tractors in India
  • 2016
    Acquired Great Plains Manufacturing Inc. of U.S. and made it a subsidiary

History of Kubota Products

Kubota started with the production and marketing of cast metal products. Ever since its foundation, it has provided a large variety of products that contribute to people’s lives and society, including iron pipes for waterworks, engines for agricultural and industrial purposes, and machine tools. All of its business organizations and products have been developed under the basic idea that “Society keeps corporations going forward.”

Figure:History of Kubota Products

Major Products Driving the Development of Kubota

Photo:1893 Cast iron pipe for water supply1893 Cast iron pipe for water supply

Photo:1922 Oil-based engine for agro-industrial purpose1922 Oil-based engine for agro-industrial purpose

Photo:1947 Cultivator1947 Cultivator

Photo:1953 Power shovel1953 Power shovel

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