Kyoto: Celebrating the Company's 15th Anniversary / 1963

An Idea from the Workplace Creates a Memorable 15th Anniversary Event

Kyoto: Celebrating the Company's 15th Anniversary / 1963

Progress - a Powerful, Motivating Force

In June 1963, a company newsletter set forth the details regarding a special contest, in which the employees could come up with ideas for an event commemorating the 15th anniversary of the company's founding. The contest's basic objective was as follows.

To celebrate the 15th anniversary of the company's establishment, we will hold a commemorative ceremony and event, the concept of which is to be proposed by the employees. The point is to foster the energy of all Honda Motor employees, to enhance their sense of mission in the company, and to advance to a new phase as a rapidly developing organization.

Progress - a Powerful, Motivating Force

Group photo of Hamamatsu Factory's First Machinery Section, which took grand prize with their proposition, "Night in an Imaginary International City"

No limit was set for the budget required to pull off the idea, which employees had only two weeks to submit. The grand prize was 500,000 yen for the winning section, which was to number up to fifty members. Beyond that, 5,000 yen was to be added for each additional member. This was a bold offer at a time when the first monthly paycheck for a college graduate was around 28,000 yen.

The year 1963 was a pivotal one for Honda. It served as a springboard for rapid expansion, with the company's first sales of four-wheeled vehicles the T-360 and S-500. The year also saw an unprecedented increase in the production of Super Cubs, as well as an increase in exports.

Takeo Fujisawa, the senior managing director at the time, talks about this event in the July 1963 company newsletter:

In the period of just fifteen years since the founding of the company, we have made significant progress toward our goal of being an export company. Isn't it fantastic that we were able to realize what was once merely a dream?

Ten years ago, when we imported machinery worth 400 million yen, we decided that anniversary events would be forestalled until we could truly say we'd earned the dollars ourselves.

When we look ambitiously toward the future now, we should never let ourselves be content with what we have at the present. On the occasion of our 15th anniversary, I would like to take the opportunity to renew our confidence and our pledge to that principle.

Fujisawa's words brimmed with enthusiasm for the company's 15th anniversary ceremony and its potential as a motivating force toward progress. The goal, obviously, was to make Honda the single greatest exporter in Japan.

The Challenging Spirit of Honda

1990 - 1999
  1. The Birth of Twin Ring Motegi / 1997The Birth of Twin Ring Motegi / 1997
  2. Entry to Champ Car Racing / 1994Entry to Champ Car Racing / 1994
  3. Odyssey / 1994Odyssey / 1994
  4. Establishment of Honda Taiyo, Kibo-no-Sato Honda and Honda R&D Taiyo / 1992Establishment of Honda Taiyo, Kibo-no-Sato Honda and Honda R&D Taiyo / 1992
  5. Hosting Hosting "Orei-no-kai" / 1991
  6. The NSX / 1990The NSX / 1990
1980 - 1989
  1. The VTEC Engine / 1989The VTEC Engine / 1989
  2. Honda EV Plus: The Dream of an Electric Vehicle / 1988Honda EV Plus: The Dream of an Electric Vehicle / 1988
  3. An Automated Line for Painting and Coating / 1988An Automated Line for Painting and Coating / 1988
  4. Four-Wheel Steering System (4WS) / 1987Four-Wheel Steering System (4WS) / 1987
  5. The Airbag System / 1987The Airbag System / 1987
  6. The ZE Engine (GX110 / 140 / 240 / 270 / 340 Series) / 1983The ZE Engine (GX110 / 140 / 240 / 270 / 340 Series) / 1983
  7. Formula One Entry / 1983Formula One Entry / 1983
  8. Development of Honda's Franz System Car / 1982Development of Honda's Franz System Car / 1982
  9. The World's Smallest Welding Line / 1982The World's Smallest Welding Line / 1982
  10. Transfer Lines for Modular Components / 1981Transfer Lines for Modular Components / 1981
  11. The Car Navigation System / 1981The Car Navigation System / 1981
  12. City / 1981City / 1981
  13. The F200 The F200 "Komame" Mini-Tiller / 1980
  14. Establishing Honda of America Manufacturing / 1980Establishing Honda of America Manufacturing / 1980
1970 - 1979
  1. The Oval Piston Engine / 1979The Oval Piston Engine / 1979
  2. Returning to the World Motorcycle Grand Prix / 1979Returning to the World Motorcycle Grand Prix / 1979
  3. The HR21 Lawn Mower / 1978The HR21 Lawn Mower / 1978
  4. Creating Hometown Forests / 1977Creating Hometown Forests / 1977
  5. The ME Engine (G100 / 150 / 200 / 300 / 400 Series) / 1977The ME Engine (G100 / 150 / 200 / 300 / 400 Series) / 1977
  6. Introducing the Accord / 1976Introducing the Accord / 1976
  7. CG125 / 1975CG125 / 1975
  8. Establishment of Honda Engineering / 1974Establishment of Honda Engineering / 1974
  9. Company Leaders Honda and Fujisawa Retire; Kawashima Assumes Presidency / 1973Company Leaders Honda and Fujisawa Retire; Kawashima Assumes Presidency / 1973
  10. Announcing the Civic / 1972Announcing the Civic / 1972
  11. Introducing the CVCC / 1972Introducing the CVCC / 1972
  12. Holding All Honda Idea Contests / 1970Holding All Honda Idea Contests / 1970
  13. Launching the Office of Safe Driving Promotional Operations / 1970Launching the Office of Safe Driving Promotional Operations / 1970
1960 - 1969
  1. The Dream CB750 FOUR / 1969The Dream CB750 FOUR / 1969
  2. Launching the Honda 1300 / 1968Launching the Honda 1300 / 1968
  3. The Hondamatic Transmission / 1968The Hondamatic Transmission / 1968
  4. Entering the Auto Market at Last / 1966Entering the Auto Market at Last / 1966
  5. The E300 Portable Generator / 1965The E300 Portable Generator / 1965
  6. Formula One Entry / 1964Formula One Entry / 1964
  7. Kyoto: Celebrating the Company's 15th Anniversary / 1963Kyoto: Celebrating the Company's 15th Anniversary / 1963
  8. Establishing Belgium Honda / 1963Establishing Belgium Honda / 1963
  9. Launching the S360 and T360 / 1962Launching the S360 and T360 / 1962
  10. Employing the Employing the "My Record" Project and Expert Certification / 1960
  11. The R&D Center Goes Independent / 1960The R&D Center Goes Independent / 1960
1950 - 1959
  1. Establishing American Honda Motor Co. / 1959Establishing American Honda Motor Co. / 1959

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