Shōjirō Ishibashi

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Shōjirō Ishibashi
石橋 正二郎
Shōjirō Ishibashi in 1952.jpg
Shōjirō Ishibashi in 1952
Born(1889-02-01)February 1, 1889
DiedSeptember 11, 1976(1976-09-11) (aged 87)
Kyoto, Japan
Nationality Japanese
OccupationFounder of Bridgestone Corporation
RelativesKunio Hatoyama (grandson)
Yukio Hatoyama (grandson)

Shōjirō Ishibashi (石橋 正二郎, Ishibashi Shōjirō, February 1, 1889 – September 11, 1976) was a Japanese businessman who founded the Bridgestone Corporation, the world's largest maker of tires,[1] in 1931 in the city of Kurume, Fukuoka, Japan. Bridgestone was named after its founder: In the Japanese language ishi means "stone" and bashi(/hashi) means "bridge".[1] hence the origin of the company's name in English.[1]

Ishibashi's daughter, Yasuko Hatoyama, became heir to Ishibashi's considerable fortune and has used the inheritance to fund her family's political causes.[1] She married former Japanese Foreign Minister Iichirō Hatoyama.[1] The couple had two sons, who are Ishibashi's grandchildren - politicians Kunio Hatoyama, who served as Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications, and Yukio Hatoyama, who was Prime Minister from 16 September 2009 to 8 June 2010.[1][2]

Ishibashi's motto for Bridgestone was to "serve society with products of superior quality". He founded Ishibashi Cultural Center and the Bridgestone Museum of Art (also located at 10 Kyobashi 1-chome, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 104) and was a major benefactor of the Tokyo National Museum of Modern Art, having also constructed the building in which it is housed.

Prince Motor Company[edit]

Tama Motor Company (later renamed as Prince Motor Company) executives at the exhibition show of the Prince vehicles heald at the Bridgestone headquarters in Kyobashi, Tokyo in March 1952. From left to right, Tamotsu Toyama (executive director. Former prototype aircraft workshop manager of Tachikawa Aircraft Company), Satoichiro Suzuki (president), Shojiro Ishibashi (chairman of Tama Motors and the president of Bridgestone) and Kanichiro Ishibashi (executive director. Son of Shojiro Ishibashi).

Ishibashi made sure of birth and the end of the Prince Motor Company.[3][4]

  • February 1949 - Ishibashi financed the Tokyo Electric Car Company (one of the successors of the Tachikawa Aircraft Company) and became the Chairperson of the Board.
  • November 1949 – Tokyo Electric Car changed its name to Tama Electric Car Company.
  • November 1950 - Tama Electric Car ordered the new gasoline engine from the Fuji Precision Industries (one of the successors of the disbanded Nakajima Aircraft Company).
  • April 1951 - Ishibashi bought the most of the stock of the Fuji Precision Industries and became the Chairperson of the Board. At this time, Ishibashi owned both Tokyo Electric Car and Fuji Precision.
  • November 1951 - Tama Electric Car changed its name to the Tama Motor Company.
  • November 1952 - Tama Motor Company changed its name to the Prince Motor Company.
  • April 1954 – Prince Motor Company was merged into Fuji Precision. (Prior to this, two of them were owned by Ishibashi.)
  • February 1961 – Fuji Precision returned its name to Prince Motor Company again.
  • May 1965 – Ishibashi (the owner of Prince), Hidehiko Ogawa (the president of Prince) and Katsuji Kawamata (the president of Nissan) signed a merger memorandum.
  • August 1966 – Prince was merged into Nissan.


  1. ^ a b c d e f Takahashi, Kosuke (2009-08-29). "Japan on the brink of a new era". Asia Times. Retrieved 2009-08-31.
  2. ^ "Japan's PM Yukio Hatoyama resigns". BBC News. 2010-06-02.
  3. ^ 『プリンス自動車の光芒』 桂木洋二著 グランプリ出版 2003年10月22日KATSURAGI, Yoji (2003), “The Beam of Light of the Prince Motor Company”, Grand Prix Book Publishing Co., Ltd., (Japanese) ISBN 4-87687-251-1
  4. ^ 『「プリンス」荻窪の思い出 II』荻友会編 私家版 1997年11月16日 "Prince - Memories of Ogikubo" Private press by Tekiyukai Association, Nov. 16, 1997 (Japanese)