History of Nippon Shokubai
During World War II, producing munitions was the priority. Once the war ended, Japan saw soaring demand in various industries related to food, clothing, and housing due to recovery efforts. The phthalic anhydride we developed in 1941 was in high demand as a raw material for aircraft coatings and plastics during the war. Afterward, it was used as a plasticizer for vinyl chloride resin, which was being used for everything from clothing to construction materials and beyond, thus contributing to the development of the vinyl chloride industry.
|1941||Established as Osame Gosei Kagaku Kogyo Co., Ltd.|
|1943||Opened Suita Factory|
|1949||Company renamed Nippon Shokubai Kagaku Kogyo Co., Ltd.|
|1941||First in Japan to commercially produce phthalic anhydride|
1950s and 1960s
Rapid economic growth and the desire for convenience and comfort for more affluent lifestyles drove mass production, which resulted in growing demand for the chemical goods needed to create the underlying materials and products. The ethylene oxide we developed in 1959 has contributed significantly to the development of the Japanese petrochemical industry, and is now used as a raw material for many familiar items, including PET plastic bottles, polyester, construction materials, and detergents.
|1950||Opened Tokyo Branch Office (currently Tokyo Office)|
|1952||Listed on the first section of the Osaka Securities Exchange|
|1956||Opened Amagasaki Factory
Listed on the first section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange
|1959||Opened Kawasaki Plant (currently Kawasaki Chidori Plant)|
|1960||Opened Himeji Factory (currently Himeji Plant)|
|1961||Relocated the Osaka Office to Koraibashi in Higashi-ku (present-day Chuo-ku), Osaka|
|1967||Opened Kawasaki Second Factory (currently Kawasaki Ukishima Plant)|
|1968||Established Nisshoku Aro Chemicals Co., Ltd., a joint venture with Ashland Oil Inc., USA|
|1969||Established Nisshoku Schenectady Kagaku Inc., a joint venture with Schenectady Chemicals, USA|
|1952||Successfully mass-produced maleic anhydride through benzene oxidation|
|1953||Used proprietary technology to commercially produce unsaturated polyester resin for the first time in Japan|
|1955||Launched production of fumaric acid|
|1959||Used proprietary technology to commercially produce ethylene oxide for the first time in Japan|
|1960||Received the Okochi Memorial Prize for commercializing ethylene oxide and ethylene glycol|
|1962||Launched production of ethanolamine|
|1967||Received the Society of Synthetic Organic Chemistry, Japan Award (Technological section) for establishing the production technology for phthalonitrile and benzonitrile using ammoxidation process|
|1969||Launched production of ethyleneimine|
1970s and 1980s
Began in-house, low-cost, large-scale production of acrylic acid amid challenging economic circumstances, including a 20% reduction of operations by synthetic fiber manufacturers due to trade friction between Japan and the USA and rising crude oil prices from OPEC. Our acrylic acid was used as a raw material for coating and adhesives, and we also used it to produce derivative products such as superabsorbent polymer AQUALIC™ CA.
|1970||Closed Amagasaki Factory|
|1971||Established NIPPON POLYMER INDUSTRIES CO., LTD., a joint venture with Toyo Ink Manufacturing Co., Ltd.|
|1982||Established joint company NIHON METHACRYL MONOMER CO., LTD. with Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd.|
|1988||Established NA Industries, Inc. (currently Nippon Shokubai America Industries, Inc.) in Tennessee, USA Opened Sanda Factory Established Tsukuba Research Center|
|1970||Commercially produced acrylic acid and acrylates by oxidizing propylene for the first time in Japan|
|1972||Launched production of secondary alcohol ethoxylates
Received the Okochi Memorial Production Prize for acrylic acid and acrylates production technology
|1973||Received the Director-General of the Japan Science and Technology Agency Award for acrylic acid production technology|
|1974||Launched production of automotive catalysts|
|1976||Received the Japan Petroleum Institute Award for Technological Progress for secondary alcohol ethoxylate production technology
Kawasaki First Factory received an award from the Minister of International Trade and Industry as a good production site for high-pressure gas
|1978||Received the Okochi Memorial Production Prize for secondary alcohol ethoxylate production technology|
|1979||Launched production of spherical fine particles
Himeji Plant received the Director-General of the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy Award as a good production site for heat management
|1982||Completed demonstration plant for methacrylic acid and methyl methacrylate|
|1985||Launched full-scale production of superabsorbent polymers|
|1987||Launched production of polycarboxylate ether polymers
Received the Japan Petroleum Institute Award for methyl methacrylate production technology
Received the Technological Award from the Catalysis Society of Japan for developing catalysts for methacrylic acid production
Received the Society of Synthetic Organic Chemistry, Japan Award (Technological section) for establishing and commercializing a highly efficient synthesis process for polyfluoro-aromatic compounds
|1989||Received the Technological Award from the Catalysis Society of Japan for developing catalysts for ammonia dry-type flue-gas denitration|
In 1985, as more women began working outside the home and demand increased for products to reduce the burden of childcare, we began mass-producing superabsorbent polymer AQUALIC™ CA, which dramatically increased the performance of disposable diapers. The excellent absorbency and liquid retention of our superabsorbent polymers has reduced the average number of daily diaper changes, contributing to better living by making childcare less burdensome.
|1990||Established ULTRASORB Chemikalien GmbH, a joint venture with BASF Corporation, Germany
Acquired land for a new factory in Oita Prefecture
|1991||Established Lucky MMA Corp. (currently LX MMA Corporation), a joint venture with Lucky Corp., Korea and Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd.
Company renamed NIPPON SHOKUBAI CO., LTD
|1992||Established ICT Inc., a joint venture with Degussa Corporation, USA, and ICT Co., Ltd., a joint venture with Degussa Japan Co., Ltd.|
|1994||Established NS Green Co., Ltd.|
|1996||Established PT. Nisshoku Tripolyta Acrylindo in Indonesia, a joint venture with Toriporita Corporation and Tomen Corporation|
|1997||Established American Acryl NA, LLC and American Acryl L.P. in the USA, joint ventures with Elf Atokem North America|
|1998||Established NIPPON SHOKUBAI (ASIA) PTE. LTD. in Singapore
Absorbed Nisshoku Aro Chemicals Co., Ltd.
|1999||Established NIPPON SHOKUBAI EUROPE N.V. in Belgium. Acquired a majority share in ULTRASORB Chemikalien GmbH|
|1992||Received the Chemical Society of Japan Award for Technical Development for developing a new production method for ethyleneimine|
|1996||Received the Chemical Society of Japan Award for Technical Development for developing and commercializing a new production process for maleimides|
|1997||Launched production of dioxin decomposition catalysts|
Larger, thinner LCD TVs and the advent and proliferation of smartphones drove demand for optical films for flat-panel displays. Our commercialization of high-performance acrylic resin ACRYVIEWA™, a functional polymer with high transparency and advanced optical properties and durability, in 2006 contributed to the popularization of digital devices.
|2000||ULTRASORB Chemikalien GmbH absorbed NIPPON SHOKUBAI GmbH Acquired a majority share in PT.
Nisshoku Tripolyta Acrylindo in Indonesia and renamed the company PT. NIPPON SHOKUBAI INDONESIA
|2002|| Acquired acrylic acid business (opened Ehime Plant) and transferred MMA monomer business in a business exchange with SUMITOMO CHEMICAL COMPANY, LIMITED
Transferred ULTRASORB Chemikalien GmbH business to NIPPON SHOKUBAI EUROPE N.V.
Established joint company Solion Corporation with DAI-ICHI KOGYO SEIYAKU CO., LTD.
|2003||Established joint company Japan Composite Co., Ltd. with Mitsui Takeda Chemicals, Inc.
Established NISSHOKU CHEMICAL INDUSTRY (ZHANGJIAGANG) CO., LTD. in China
Daiko Kaiun Co., Ltd. renamed Nisshoku Butsuryu Co., Ltd.
|2004||Acquired Singapore acrylic acid business from SUMITOMO CHEMICAL COMPANY, LIMITED (acquired SINGAPORE ACRYLIC PTE LTD and SINGAPORE GLACIAL ACRYLIC PTE. LTD.)
Opened Shanghai Office
|2007||Opened Korea Office
Established NISSHOKU TRADING (Shanghai) CO., LTD. in China
Closed Ehime Plant
|2008||Acquired shares of NIPPON NYUKAZAI CO., LTD. and SINO-JAPAN CHEMICAL CO., LTD. to make them subsidiaries
Opened Taipei Office
|2009||Closed Shanghai Office|
|2000||Commercialized fuel-cell materials|
|2002||N-Launched production of N-Vinyl pyrrolidone|
|2003||Received the Kirkpatrick Chemical Engineering Achievement Award for N-Vinyl pyrrolidone production technology
Decommissioned and dismantled the phthalic anhydride facility
|2006||Launched production of acrylic resins for optical materials
Received three awards for the development of new ethanolamine production technology in the same year: the Chemical Society of Japan Award for Technical Development, the Society of Chemical Engineers, Japan Award for Outstanding Technological Development, and the Catalysis Society of Japan Award for Technology
|2007||Received the Chemical Society of Japan Award for Technical Development for developing a new production method for N-Vinyl-2-pyrrolidone|
|2009||Received the Okochi Memorial Technology Prize for developing new diethanolamine production technology|
2010s and 2020s
Lithium-ion batteries have underpinned the proliferation of mobile phones, smartphones, and other devices. IONEL™ is used as an electrolyte for rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that works effectively, within a broad temperature range from low to high temperatures, to improve cycle durability, rate capability and preservation stability, as well as in preventing battery pack bulging. In line with the moves to mitigate climate change and promote efficient energy use, applications of IONELTM are expected to expand especially in the fields of electric vehicles (EV) and electricity storage in the future.
|2012||Closed Taipei Office|
|2013||NIPPON SHOKUBAI (ASIA) PTE. LTD. absorbed SINGAPORE GLACIAL ACRYLIC PTE. LTD.|
|2015||Closed Suita Factory and built a research and development center on the property
Established Nippon Shokubai Korea Co., Ltd. to turn the Korea Office into a local corporation
|2017||Closed Tsukuba Research Center|
|2019||Acquired a majority share in Rena Therapeutics Inc.|
|2014||Received the Chemical Society of Japan Award for Technical Development for developing and commercializing lactone-ring-containing acrylic polymer for optical films
Commercialized electrolyte for rechargeable lithium-ion batteries
|2019||Completed facility for manufacturing middle-molecular drug active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs)|
|2021||Received the Technology Award from the Catalyst Manufacturers Association, Japan for the development of highly active and resistant De-NOx catalyst and the identification of its performance enhancement mechanism|