We import, manufacture and sell Bincho charcoal and consumables,
We are delivering to restaurants and consumers across the country.
Takayama Co. Ltd. manufactures products, including charcoal, binchotan charcoal, and consumables, overseas and imports such products to Japan to wholesale and distribute to trading companies, wholesalers, eating and drinking establishments, mass merchandising outlets, and individual customers nationwide.
Seeking what I could do for my hometown of Sendai triggered by the Great East Japan Earthquake
I decided to start a venture company in 2010. Since that time, for one year I worked from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. for the company I was with and from 11:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. of the next morning without sleep for my part-time job. I recall it as if it were yesterday.
The Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, 2011, urged me to desperately consider what I could do for my hometown of Sendai.
Great hardship after starting a business
I managed to start the business on July 24, 2011. My initial plan was to sell charcoal by ordering from domestic manufacturers.
However, at the last minute, the person in charge of the wholesale division of a major manufacturer in Japan rejected the distribution of their charcoal to me without explanation.
I started the business for the sale of charcoal, but I was not able to get any at all. I was really at a loss.
However, I changed my mind. I decided that I would start all of the processes by myself from building a kiln to making charcoal.
Immediately I went to Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, and China with a backpack on my back, though I did not understand the languages of the respective countries.
The first product was complete at last.
"This should be marketable!"
I came back with confidence and waited for the shipment to arrive by sea. However, looking at the delivered product, I was stunned.
The sorting was a mess. The boxes were battered, and most of the charcoal was like debris. I had never seen such terrible charcoal in my life.
Nevertheless, my company would not survive unless I could trade products for money.
I agonized over what to do.
I visited my customers one by one to apologize, since they were looking forward to my products.
I apologized profusely to my customers and asked them to believe in me because I would definitely make good products.
Even now, I have a long-term relationship with those customers.
I always think about what an encounter is.
An ideal encounter for me is when I can take it a positive direction, considering the thoughts of people who introduce someone to me, as well as those who are introduced to me. I believe such encounters create long-term relationships.
To make Sendai an exciting town where people gather!
At last, I have a dream.
I would like to create a place where people gather with excitement here in Sendai!
I have visited many places in Japan and overseas on business.
I came to realize that people overseas do not know much about Sendai.
They know about Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, Kyoto, Fukuoka, Nagasaki, Kanazawa, Okinawa, and Sapporo. Many even say they have been to those places.
On the other hand, few people have been to Sendai. A majority of people overseas do not know about Sendai. I wonder how many people even among the Japanese have visited Sendai.
Why so few?
I suppose it is because Sendai does not have much excitement to draw people to this city.
People like to be impressed. When an experience from the past that was exciting and impressive and that happened in a certain place crosses their mind, they want to return.
I would like to create a place for adults and children to share excitement in an ongoing manner. It is a place where children spend time together with parents having hands-on experience and working up a good sweat. Those children, when they grow up, will share their excitement with their children and grandchildren.
Now, I am getting closer to realizing my dream.
I will speak about my dream with passion. I don’t mind if I look silly, or how uncool or lacking in manners I may look. I dare to fall flat on the ground.
I am determined to go ahead and never give up no matter how many years it takes me to realize my dream to serve children and the future Sendai.
Made in Sendai.
I would be grateful to receive a lot of advice and support from you to help my dream come true for the future Sendai as well as the children.
I have only a small amount of power as an individual. However, I would be delighted to fully support you if there is anything I could do.
I would appreciate it if all of you could envision a long-term relationship moving forward with me. I am very grateful for this encounter with you.
We aim to contribute to the community and environment through our business related to eating and drinking, as well as charcoal.