Kaedeoka Spring industry Limited company (Sumida City)
President Kaedeoka, youthful in bearing and very cheerful, says he was able to change himself much thanks to running a business in sundry interior goods made with spring manufacturing technologies. He believes relationships among people eventually form a big circle. We have him talk about joys and excitements gained through his business.
We plan/develop and manufacture various “springs,” used for industrial parts, as well as sundry interior goods. We deal industrial springs used for specialized machines with sales accounting for 80% of total.
The rest 20% is from originally developed products including card holders incorporating functional beauty of springs, a business started about 12-13 years ago. Started by mere accident, this business helped us become widely known after a certain relationship led us to sell at such stores as The Museum of Modern Art Store of MoMA, New York and those at domestic museums. In retrospect, the very turning point was our moving into the current building built 16 years ago by a cooperative association of businesses in Sumida City.
Our predecessor, having been a fertilizer wholesaler dealing rice bran and encountered difficulties sustaining the business due to Government’s policies during the War, started a spring manufacturer in 1949 and built a factory at Kamezawa near Kinshicho, Sumida City. It then moved to the current location also in the City, triggered by a newly introduced public policy to make the Kamezawa region a center of textile industries.
Here, our business had got a boost by gaining new peers and trying new challenges.
Firstly, after we won an approval of a “Sumida Meister” in 1993 as our parts manufacturing technologies were appreciated, we started to challenge for City’s Grand Prize for Meister’s Creativities. Thereafter, we joined City’s “Joint Order Entry Group,” invited by association members. Our acquaintance with an industrial designer in its subgroup “Development Workgroup” and a test production of spring-made key holders caused our big turning point.
The key holder we launched as a result of collaboration of the designer’s ideas and our technologies was not satisfactory as a business operation because of its high costs, despite good reputation. Sustaining the operation was rough going but Tokyo City’s supports for our collaboration works turned out to be a big help
While we were expanding sales channels in the darkness of trial and error, our products wholesaled to the SPIRAL, a complex at Aoyama, started to draw public attention and sales agreements with MoMA, NY was concluded. These incidents triggered an approval of Tokyo Meister by Tokyo City, product displays at the world’s largest design exhibition Milano Salone at the Triennale art museum and sale to three-star restaurant L’OSIER in Ginza, paving our way to global markets.
I speculate there are more young entrepreneurs among those who think of moving to Tokyo in such a tough time everywhere. I would like to advice those people to “never falter”.
There are always failures around. When confronting those, you could find out something if you seriously review what and how you should have fixed. Recession is even an opportunity for you to work hard as there might be no downside ahead. How about taking a look into support systems suited for current situations and making best use of them proactively? I sincerely recommend doing so as I myself have seen many successful evidences as such.
Kaedeoka Spring industry Limited company
Address: Technet Sumida 401, 5-9-5, Tachibana, Sumida-ku, Tokyo 131-0043