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History

Ube Industries has a history tracing back to the turn of the 19th century with the founding of the Okinoyama Coal Mine in Yamaguchi Prefecture. The coal development project was started as a silent partnership by local investors in what was then a small community.

Driven by founder Sukesaku Watanabe's vision of "creating industries with infinite possibilities from the finite resources of coal, to bring long-term prosperity to communities," the people of Ube Industries continued expanding into new business areas to meet the needs of society. The machinery business evolved from manufacturing and servicing machinery used in coal mining, and the cement business leveraged coal resources in the Ube area and widely available limestone and spoil (overburden) from coal mining in the surrounding region. The chemicals business evolved from using coal raw material to manufacture ammonium sulfate for fertilizer. These three businesses form the cornerstones of the UBE Group today.

The pioneering spirit of UBE that has existed for more than a century is carried on today through operations in Chiba and Sakai, Japan, and extending to international operations encompassing Spain and Thailand. Our founder, Sukesaku Watanabe, embraced the ideals of coexistence and mutual prosperity to achieve corporate growth that brings prosperity to communities. These ideals drive UBE as we continue to meet the challenges of the 21st century.

1897
  • Okinoyama Coal Mine is established as a silent partnership
    (later becomes Ube Mining).
Okinoyama Coal Mine (1910)
1914
  • Ube Shinkawa Iron Works (now Ube Machinery Works) is established as a silent partnership.
1923
  • Ube Cement Production, Ltd. (now Ube Cement Factory) is established.
Ube Cement Production under construction (1924)
1933
  • Ube Nitrogen Industry, Ltd. (now Ube Chemical Factory) is established.
Ube Nitrogen Industry, Ltd. (1936)
1942
  • Ube Industries, Ltd. is established through amalgamation of the four foregoing companies.
1949
  • Ube Industries, Ltd. is listed on the Tokyo and Osaka Stock Exchanges
    (currently listed on the Tokyo and Fukuoka Stock Exchanges).
1951
  • Central Research Laboratory (now Strategic Core Technology Research Laboratory, Pharmaceuticals Research Laboratory) is established.
Central Research Laboratory (1952)
1955
  • Isa Cement Factory is established.
  • Ube Caprolactam Factory is also established.
Ube Caprolactam Factory (1965)
1964
  • Polyethylene plant (now UBE-MARUZEN POLYETHYLENE Co., Ltd. ) is built in Chiba.
  • Kanda Cement Factory opens.
  • Representative offices set up in New York City and Düsseldorf
    (now UBE America Inc. and UBE Europe GmbH).
1967
  • Sakai Factory is established.
Sakai Factory (1967)
1968
  • Polypropylene plant is set up in Sakai Factory.
    (Transferred to Mitsui Chemicals, Inc., in 2001.).
  • Polymer Laboratory (now Frontier Technology Research Laboratory) is opened.
1971
  • Polybutadiene plant is built in Chiba.(now Chiba Petrochemical Factory)
1980
  • Okinoyama Coal Center is set up.
  • Representative office established in Singapore
    (now UBE Singapore Pte., Ltd.).
Okinoyama Coal Center
1982
  • Kosan-Ohashi Highway Bridge is completed.
  • A 145-MW coal-fired power plant is also completed.
1993
  • Capital investment is made in PQM of Spain
    (now UBE Corporation Europe, S.A.U.).
1995
  • UBE [HONG KONG] LTD. is established in Hong Kong. (dissolved in 2016)
1997
  • Ube Industries celebrates the 100th anniversary of business operations.
  • Thai Caprolactam Public Co., Ltd. and Ube Nylon (Thailand) Ltd.
    (now UBE Chemicals (Asia) Public Company Limited) open for business.
Thai Caprolactam Public Co., Ltd.
1998
  • Ube-Mitsubishi Cement Corporation. (joint venture with Mitsubishi Materials Corporation) is established.
  • THAI SYNTHETIC RUBBERS COMPANY LIMITED open for business.
1999
  • Ube Machinery Corporation, Ltd. is established.
2000
  • Subsidiary is established in Shanghai (now UBE [Shanghai] Ltd.).
  • UBE Automotive North America Sarnia Plant, Inc.
    is established in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada. (dissolved in 2009)
2004
  • Ube Industries establishes a comprehensive partnership with Yamaguchi University for research and development.
  • UBE-MARUZEN POLYETHYLENE Co., Ltd. (joint venture with Maruzen Petrochemical Co., Ltd.) is established.
2005
  • Nantong UBE Concrete Co., Ltd. is established.
Nantong UBE Concrete Co., Ltd.
2006
  • TSRC-UBE (NANGTONG) CHEMICAL INDUSTRIES Co., Ltd. is established in China.
2007
  • Ube Industries celebrates the 110th anniversary of business operations. UBE i Plaza is opened as a visitor center.
2008
  • Ube Industries held the 1st UBE Group Charity Concert by Japan Philharmonic Orchestra in Ube.
2010
  • UBE Latin America Servicos Ltda. is established in Brazil.
2011
  • UBE MAXELL CO., LTD. (joint venture with Hitachi Maxell, Ltd.) is established.
  • UBE KOREA CO., LTD. is established in Korea.
  • Ube Industries establishes joint venture to produce substrate materials for displays with Samsung Mobile Display Co, Ltd.
  • Ube Industries and The Dow Chemical Company Launches US-based joint venture in electrolytes for lithium-Ion batteries.
  • Ube Taiwan Co., Ltd. is established in Taiwan.
  • UBE Machinery India Private Ltd. is established in India.
2012
  • UBE Industries India Private Ltd. is established.
2013
  • Lotte Ube Synthetic Rubber SDN. BHD. is established.
  • US Power Co., Ltd. (joint venture with Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K.) is established.
  • Ube-Fujimagari Factory is established.
2014
  • UBE Machinery Mexico S.A. de C.V. is established in Mexico.
  • Ube-kohsan Central Hospital Corp. is independent.
2015
  • Subsidiary in Mexico, UBE México S. de R.L. de C.V. is established.
  • Yamaguchi-Ube Power Generation Co., ltd (joint venture with Electric Power Development Co.,Ltd. and Osaka Gas Co., Ltd.) is established.
  • Ube Kenzai Corporation.,LTD. is established.