Company Information

History

March 1968 CBS Sony Records founded in Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo, pursuant to the joint venture agreement between Sony Corporation and Columbia Broadcasting System Inc. (now CBS Inc.) at a capital of 720 million yen (investment ratio 50:50).
April 1968 Headquarters relocated to Minato-ku, Tokyo.
August 1968 Release of first record.
November 1968 Shizuoka Factory (now Shizuoka Production Center 1) opens in Ooigawa, Shida-gun, Shizuoka Prefecture.
February 1969 Manufacturing of analog discs begins. (First title: Simon & Garfunkel / Graduate Original Soundtrack)
December 1969 Manufacturing of cassette tapes begins
July 1971 Launches a new record label “EPIC”.
August 1973 Corporate name changes to CBS Sony Inc.
Headquarters relocated to Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo.
August 1974 Shizuoka Factory to operate independently as CBS Sony Records Inc.
May 1978 Release of first pre-recorded video product.
August 1978 Epic Sony Inc. founded as wholly owned subsidiary.
September 1978 Shinanomachi Studios opens in Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo.
August 1981 SD Department is created to strengthen artist discovery and development.
April 1982 Manufacturing of compact discs (CDs) begins. (First title: Billy Joel / 52nd Street)
October 1982 Release of first CDs. (Initial release lineup: 50 titles)
August 1983 Corporate name changes to CBS Sony Group Inc. A&R divisions to operate independently as CBS Sony Inc.
January 1988 Sony Corporation acquires all stock previously owned by CBS Inc.; becomes a wholly owned subsidiary.
February 1988 Acquires from Sony Corporation all stock for Sony Video Software International, which produces, manufactures and distributes video and karaoke products.
March 1988 Consolidates the four companies, CBS Sony Inc., Epic Sony Inc., CBS Sony Records Inc., and Sony Video Software International.
November 1989 Manufacturing of laser discs begins.
April 1991 Corporate name changes to Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc.
November 1991 Listed on the Second Section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange.
February 1992 Shizuoka Production Center 2 opens in Yoshida, Haibara-gun, Shizuoka Prefecture.
April 1992 Launches a new record label “Ki/oon Sony Records.”
August 1992 Manufacturing of MiniDiscs (MDs) begins. (First title: Mariah Carey / Emotions)
August 1992 Release of first MDs. (Initial release lineup: 88 titles)
March 1995 Launches SMEJ official website “BIGTOP” (now Sony Music Online Japan).
June 1996 Shizuoka Production Centers certified to ISO 9002, an international standard for quality management systems.
February 1997 Manufacturing of DVD products begins. (First title: The Secret Service released from Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc.)
April 1997 Shizuoka Production Centers certified to ISO14001, an international environmental management standard.
July 1998 Ibaraki Production Center is completed in Naka-machi, Naka-gun (now Naka City), Ibaraki Prefecture.
Shirokanedai Office opens in Minato-ku, Tokyo.
August 1998 Changes corporate symbol to “Sony Music Logo Type.”
May 1999 Manufacturing of Super Audio CDs (SACDs) begins.
December 1999 Launches commercial online distribution of new domestic CD singles. (Service name: bitmusic)
December 1999 Delists from Tokyo Stock Exchange.
January 2000 Exchanges stock with Sony Corporation to become its wholly owned subsidiary.
February 2000 Introduces corporate executive system (operating officer system).
January 2001 Sets up a portion of A&R division to operate independently as Defstar Records Inc.
March 2001 SME Nogizaka Building opens with Sony Music Studios Tokyo located on basement floors 1 through 3.
May 2001 Launches “EGSTREET” (now Sony Music Shop), a consolidated Sony Music Group e-commerce site.
June 2001 Launches broadband magazine “MORRICH.”
June 2001 Headquarters relocated to Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo (SME Rokubancho Building).
October 2001 A&R divisions are set up independently as Sony Music Japan International Inc., Sony Music Records Inc., Epic Records Japan Inc., Ki/oon Records Inc., and Sony Music Associated Records Inc.
The sales division is set up independently as Sony Music Distribution Inc.
Manufacturing divisions are set up independently as Sony Music Manufacturing Inc.
February 2002 Sony Music Group certified to ISO 14001, an international environmental management standard.
December 2002 Launches Chaku-uta, an online distribution service of audio for mobile phones.
April 2003 SME Records is set up to operate independently.
The forerunning Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc. is divided into Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc. (succeeding the corporate name) and Sony Culture Entertainment (Japan) Inc.
April 2005 Sony Music Network Inc. is founded to develop a new market for music that fully utilizes digital networks.
April 2006 A&R divisions and subsidiaries of Sony Music Artists Inc. are reorganized and merged to create management companies Hit & Run Inc., SMA Entertainment Inc., SMA Players Inc., Newcome Inc., Music Tabloid Inc, and Village Music Inc. to form the Artist Management Business Group.
November 2006 Releases first Blu-ray disc (BD) titles.
December 2006 Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc. absorbs Sony Culture Entertainment (Japan) Inc.
October 2008 BMG Japan, Inc. becomes a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc.
December 2008 Introduces Blu-spec CDs.
April 2009 Sony Music Artists Inc. absorbs Artist Management Business Group companies (except for Village Music Inc.).
October 2009 Domestic Label Business Division of BMG Japan, Inc. to operate as Ariola Japan Inc. The International Label Business Division of BMG Japan, Inc. is absorbed to become part of Sony Music Japan International Inc.
April 2011 Sony Music Artists Inc. absorbs Village Music Inc.
April 2012 As a result of reorganization at Media Business Group, Music on! TV Inc. and Sony Magazines Inc. are merged to become M-ON! Entertainment Inc..
Hall Network Inc. creates A&R division and changes its corporate name to Zepp Live Entertainment Inc.
Ki/oon Records Inc. changes its corporate name to Ki/oon Music Inc.
October 2012 Sony Music Artists Inc. absorbs Westside Inc.
December 2012 Introduces Blu-spec CD2.
April 2014 Sony Music Records Inc. absorbs SME Records Inc., Sony Music Associated Records Inc., Epic Records Japan Inc., Defstar Records Inc., Ariola Japan Inc., Ki/oon Music Inc., Sony Music Japan International Inc. and changes its corporate name to Sony Music Labels Inc.
Sony Music Distribution (Japan) Inc. absorbs Sony Music Network Inc. and changes its corporate name to Sony Music Marketing Inc.
ultraCeep Inc. is founded.
June 2014 Zepp Live Entertainment Inc. changes its corporate name to Zepp Hall Network Inc.
Zepp Live Inc. is founded.
April 2015 Sony DADC Japan Inc. becomes a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc.
Label Gate Co., Ltd. absorbs Clipgate Inc.
April 2017 Bancho Inc. changes its corporate name to Quatro A Inc.