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Hitachi, Ltd. first started out in 1910 as a humble electrical repair shop for a copper mining company in Japan. The name Hitachi literally means "sunrise", reflecting the founding philosophy of contributing to people and society through technology. This philosophy has helped Hitachi become one of the world's largest corporations today with over 340,000 employees worldwide.
In Singapore, Hitachi started with a liaison office in 1963 and expanded its operations in 1972 to manufacture a wide range of products. In 1989, Hitachi Asia Ltd. (previously Hitachi Asia Pte. Ltd.) was established as one of Hitachi's four regional headquarters with the other three in America, Europe and China. In 1990, the company was awarded the Operational Headquarters (OHQ) status by the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB).
As a regional headquarter, Hitachi Asia Ltd. (HAS) co–ordinates the marketing and sales activities for industrial, electrical and electronic products and information systems solutions, as well as conducts international procurement for Hitachi's manufacturing plants worldwide. HAS now has a network of ten offices in seven countries in Asia, excluding East Asia.
In 1998, HAS was converted from a private limited to a non–listed public company and granted Financial Treasury Centre status by Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to enable it to issue bonds. The conversion was aimed at strengthening its ability to provide financial support to the Hitachi group in Asia.
Hitachi believes that as a key player in the region, its responsibilities extend beyond business investments. As such, it has consistently engaged in activities that contribute directly to its local communities.
In Singapore, Hitachi's longest standing community contribution programme is the annual Christmas Light–Up which takes place along bustling Orchard Road. Hitachi has been the major sponsor of this highly visible event since 1991, and has raised funds in excess of S$2 million for the beneficiaries of the National Council of Social Services.
To promote the development of the next generation of leaders in Asia, Hitachi established the "Hitachi Young Leaders Initiative" in 1996. Through this programme, many outstanding Asian students have come together to discuss regional issues with prominent opinion leaders.
The activities above highlight Hitachi's ongoing commitment to contribute to its local communities.