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TDK Corporation
TypePublic KK
TYO: 6762
FoundedDecember 7, 1935; 88 years ago (1935-12-07) as Tokyo Denkikagaku Kōgyō
HeadquartersNihonbashi, Chūō, ,
Area served
Key people
Takehiro Kamigama (President)
ProductsCD, DVD, Blu-ray, Electronic components, Power supplies
RevenueIncrease JP¥ 875.73 billion
Increase United States dollar 10.55 billion
Increase JP¥ 63.842 billion
Increase United States dollar 769.18 million
Increase JP¥ 45.26 billion
Increase United States dollar 545.34 million
Total assetsDecrease JP¥ 1,060.85 billion
Decrease United States dollar 12.78 billion
Total equityDecrease JP¥ 539.76 billion
Decrease United States dollar 6.50 billion
Number of employees

TDK Corporation (TDK株式会社, TDK Kabushiki-gaisha), formerly TDK Electronics Co., Ltd (東京電気化学工業株式会社), is a Japanese multinational electronics company that manufactures electronic materials, electronic components, and recording and data-storage media. Its motto is "Contribute to culture and industry through creativity".[2]

"TDK" is an initialism of the original Japanese name of the company: Tokyo Denkikagaku Kōgyō (Tokyo Electronics and Chemicals). The company is listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the Nikkei 225 and TOPIX indices.


A TDK SA-90 compact cassette

TDK was founded in Tokyo, Japan, on 7 December 1935 to manufacture the iron-based magnetic material ferrite, which had been recently invented by Yogoro Kato and Takeshi Takei.[3] In 1952 and 1957 they began production of magnetic tapes, with compact cassette tapes following in 1966; it is for these that the company is most widely noted. TDK used to manufacture an extensive portfolio of magnetic and optical media, including several formats of videotape and blank CD-R and recordable DVD discs until the recording business was sold to Imation in 2007.

Operations in the USA began in 1965 with a New York City office,[4] and European operations began in 1970 with an office in Frankfurt, West Germany.[5]

In the 1990s TDK's Mass Storage Division included brushless DC spindle motors, magnetoresistance (MR) heads, and thin-film heads.

Since 1997 TDK has gradually withdrawn from the production of compact cassettes. First with the MA-X and AR ("Acoustic Response"), then the AD ("Acoustic Dynamic") and SA-X line in 2001 and 2002 respectively, then the MA ("Metal Alloy") line in 2004. The SA ("Super Avilyn") and D ("Dynamic") lines were withdrawn in 2012 under Imation ownership. Industry trends see the company moving into new forms of media; in 2004 TDK was the first media manufacturer to join the companies developing BD post-DVD technology.[4] TDK operated a semiconductor division in California for about a decade, but divested it in 2005.

Since June 2006, Takehiro Kamigama has been president, having been nominated by his predecessor, Hajime Sawabe, who currently serves as chairman.

In late 2007, Imation acquired TDK's recording business, including flash media, optical media, magnetic tape, and accessories, for $300 million.[6][7] This also included a license to use the "TDK Life on Record" brand on data storage and audio products[8] for 25 years.[6] In September 2015, Imation announced that it had agreed to relinquish this license[9] and would cease selling TDK-branded products by the end of the year.[10]

Sponsorship and advertising

The TDK sign at Piccadilly Circus in London.

TDK sponsored Ajax for several years in the 1980s during which it won the European Cupwinners Cup in 1987. From 1993 to 1999, TDK were also the sponsors of the English football club Crystal Palace, who were promoted to the Premier League twice during this era, though lasting for just one season before being relegated on both occasions. TDK was also a minor sponsor of the Brisbane Broncos Rugby League Team during the early 90's. It is a current sponsor of the IAAF World Championships in Athletics. It also sponsors activities and events such as those at The Cross nightclub in Central London, and since 1990 has had a prominent sign at Piccadilly Circus although it was announced in November 2014 that they would not be renewing the contract.[11] TDK also owned a sign on One Times Square since 2000. The screen is placed under that of Toshiba and can be seen during the annual Times Square New Year's Ball Drop.

In 2002, the company's consumer electronics division was the presenting sponsor of the Third Annual Jammy Awards, with the TDK Live Performance of the Year award honoring the best live performance that was legally available on the Web as a free download. The award was given to the band moe. for their performance at the Bonnaroo Music Festival.

TDK's own football club, based in Nikaho, Akita, recently split from the corporation to become independent football club Blaublitz Akita, with the aim for the professional leagues.


TDK operates a company museum at its Hirasawa plant in Japan.

TDK products


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 TDK Corporation. "Financial Results for FY March 2011". Archived from the original on 2015-07-21. 
  2. "TDK Japan site: motto and principles.". Archived from the original on 2006-08-23. 
  3. "TDK Hong Kong site". Archived from the original on 2006-08-21. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 "TDK Japan site: corporate history". 
  5. "TDK Europe site: corporate history". Archived from the original on 2007-10-17. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 Austin Modine (2007-04-19). "Imation buys TDK's recording media biz". Archived from the original on 2015-09-12. Retrieved 2015-12-17. "TDK is to sell its recording media business to Imation for $300m in stock and cash. [..] Under the agreement, Imation will use the TDK brand for present and future recordable magnetic, optical and flash media products worldwide. The right is revokable by TDK after 25 years." 
  7. "Imation and TDK Agree to Imation's Acquisition of TDK Brand Recording Media Business for $300 Million in Stock and Cash" , Press Release,, 19 April 2007.
  8. "Imation Corp: Our History". Imation Corporation. Archived from the original on 2015-09-10. Retrieved 2015-12-17. "Imation acquired the recording media business of TDK Corporation (2007), with an exclusive license to the TDK Life on Record brand for data storage and audio products." 
  9. "Imation Announces Steps to Accelerate Strategic Transformation". Imation via Reuters. 2015-09-28. Archived from the original on 2015-12-17. "As part of its efforts to become a pure-play data storage and security company, Imation reached a definitive agreement with TDK under which [..] Imation’s license rights to the TDK Life on Record trademark will terminate" 
  10. "TDK Life on Record". Archived from the original on 2015-12-11. Retrieved 2015-12-17. "Effective December 31, 2015, Imation Corp. will no longer be selling products licensed under the TDK Life on Record brand." .
  11. "Where is the world's best billboard site?", BBC News, 19 November 2014.

External links