History of HitachiHitachi was founded in 1910 by electrical engineer Namihei Odaira in Ibaraki Prefecture. The company's first product was Japan's first 4-kilowatt (5 hp) induction motor, initially developed for use in copper mining.
The company began as an in-house venture of Fusanosuke Kuhara's mining company in Hitachi, Ibaraki. Odaira moved headquarters to Tokyo in 1918.Odaira coined the company's toponymic name by superimposing two kanji characters: hi meaning "sun" and tachi meaning rise.
World War II had a significant impact on the company with many of its factories being destroyed by Allied bombing raids, and discord after the war. Founder Odaira was removed from the company. Hitachi's reconstruction efforts after the war were hindered by a labor strike in 1950. The company saw an increase in business during the Korean War due to defense contracts offered by the American military. Meanwhile, Hitachi went public in 1949.