Pilot (pen company)

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Pilot Corporation
Industry Stationery
Founded 1918; 98 years ago (1918)
as Namiki Manufacturing Company
Founder Ryosuke Namiki
Headquarters Tokyo, Japan
Area served
Products Writing instruments
Website www.pilotpen.com

Pilot Corporation (株式会社パイロットコーポレーション Kabushiki Kaisha Pairotto Kōporēshon?, TYO: 7846) is a Japanese pen manufacturer based in Tokyo, Japan. It produces writing instruments, stationery and jewellery, but is best known for its pens.

It is the largest pen manufacturer in Japan, and has a large number of subsidiaries throughout the world, including in the Philippines, United Kingdom, Indonesia, Malaysia, India, Brazil, South Africa, Germany and France. Most Pilot pens are made in Japan, France and the USA. Namiki, the fountain pens with maki-e lacquering designs, are made in the Hiratsuka factory.


In 1915, Ryosuke Namiki, a professor in Japan, left his job to found a small factory near Tokyo to produce gold pen nibs.[1] In 1916, Namiki expanded his product line and became a full-fledged manufacturer of writing instruments.[1]

The Pilot Pen Corporation was founded by Ryosuke Namiki with Masao Wada in 1918 under the name of the Namiki Manufacturing Company.[1]

In 1926 it established overseas offices in Malaysia, Singapore, Boston, London and Shanghai. In 1938 the name of the company changed to the Pilot Pen Co., Ltd. It was again renamed in 1950 as the Pilot Ink Company, Ltd. In 1954 a branch was opened in Brazil. From 1972 - 1999 various sub companies were formed to cover the various branches, and the collective name for these is Pilot Corporation. More recently, Pilot began the BeGreen line, pens and pencils composed of mostly recycled content.

Luxor Writing Instruments, is a major Indian stationery company based in India. Luxor manufactures and markets pens and writing instruments under the Luxor, Pilot and other pen brands. Luxor was founded in 1963 in India.[2]

Fountain Pens[edit]

In 1964, Pilot Corporation introduced the Capless. Unlike other fountain pens during its time, the Pilot Capless featured a fully retractable nib. The Capless was later reintroduced as the Vanishing Point in 1972. In 2012, the company released the Metropolitan, a popular entry-level fountain pen.


The following chart contains the Pilot product lines.[3]

Category Range of products
Pens Fountain, ballpoint, rollerball and gel ink pens
Markers Marker pens, highlighters
Pencils Mechanical pencils
Accessories refills



External links[edit]