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Supplying essential products and services with dedication: Nissho Sangyo’s remarkable journey

Article - February 14, 2024

Starting from medical paper cups to KFC Japan take-out packaging, Nissho Sangyo has proven itself to be an ‘Essential Supplier’ throughout its history.

“Our core strengths stem from being an ‘Essential Supplier’, integral to the needs of both our customers and society.”

Akihiko Sakata, President & CEO, Nissho Sangyo Co., Ltd.

Established in 1966, Nissho Sangyo initially introduced single-use urine test paper cups to medical institutions across Japan. Subsequently, following the Osaka Expo in 1970, the company expanded its scope by providing one-way packaging materials to facilitate the launch of KFC in Japan. Both the medical and KFC segments adopted niche strategies, concentrating on disposable items such as single-use medical equipment and one-way food packaging.

“The KFC venture gradually transformed us into a ‘Total Supplier’, managing essential materials for KFC outlets and ensuring meticulous store deliveries to keep pace with the rapid expansion of the chain,” says Akihiko Sakata, President & CEO of Nissho Sangyo Co., Ltd.

During the 1980s and 1990s, Nissho’s successful model was applied to other restaurant chains, further fueling its growth. Then, at the turn of the millennium, Nissho embarked on a revitalization of its medical business by venturing into the production of its own brand of disposable products through a fab-less approach.

“Following this, we leveraged our extensive delivery network to cater to the bulk purchasing and store delivery needs of a prominent pachinko chain in Japan,” explains Mr. Sakata. “Throughout our extensive history, Nissho has fostered unique growth across a diverse range of businesses, positioning ourselves as one of Japan’s most accomplished mid-sized enterprises. Rooted in the company’s founding philosophy, we have also now shifted Nissho to become an ‘Essential Supplier’ thanks to significant support from all stakeholders.”

Mr. Sakata links the company’s long-standing success to disposables, strong supply capabilities and reliable logistics. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, he also identified the need to wholeheartedly aid essential workers. Looking ahead, he envisions Nissho’s role as that of an environmentally conscious entity.

“It’s important for organizations such as ours to learn from like-minded organizations that develop cutting-edge technologies for environmentally friendly products, particularly in the realm of disposable products, such as those that are renewable, (bio)degradable, and compostable,” Mr. Sakata says. “As Nissho Sangyo embarks on this mission, we strive to combine our dedication to essential services with an unwavering commitment to a more sustainable world.”