Prologue up to the birth of Canon
1933 - 1961
|History of Enterprise||History of Products|
|1933||Canon's predecessor, Precision Optical Instruments Laboratory, is founded in Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, to conduct research into quality cameras.|
|1934||The Kwanon, Japan's first 35 mm focal-plane-shutter camera, is produced in prototype form.
|1935||The company files for registration of the "Canon" trademark.|
|1936||The Hansa Canon, a 35 mm focal-plane-shutter camera, is introduced.|
|1937||Precision Optical Industry, Co., Ltd. is founded.|
|1939||In-house production of Serenar Lens commences.|
|1940||Japan's first indirect X-ray camera is developed.
Indirect X-ray camera (1940)
|1942||Takeshi Mitarai is appointed president of Precision Optical Industry, Co.,
|1945||Production commences for the midrange JII focal-plane-shutter camera.|
|1946||The Ginza Camera Service Station opens.||The Canon SII is introduced, receiving great acclaim from ranking officers in the Occupation Forces and foreign buyers in Japan.|
|1947||The company becomes Canon Camera Co., Inc.
Government designates Canon cameras priority exports when Japan resumes export activities.
|1949||Canon shares are listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange for the first time when postwar stock trading resumes.||The Canon IIB wins first prize at a national camera exhibition held in San Francisco.|
|1951||Canon concentrates head office and manufacturing plants in Shimomaruko, Ohta-ku, Tokyo.|
|1952||The Canon IVSb, the world's first speed-light synchronized 35 mm flash-and-shutter camera, is introduced.|
|1954||Canon and the NHK Science and Technical Research Laboratories jointly develop a television camera to prepare for the commencement of television broadcasting.|
|1955||Canon's New York branch office is opened.
|1956||Supplier of precision components Chichibu Eikosha Co., Ltd. (today, Canon Electronics Inc.) becomes a Canon affiliate.||The Canon 8T, an 8 mm cinecamera, is introduced.|
|1957||Canon Europa, the sole European distributor, is established in Geneva.||The Canon L1 still camera and Canon 8T 8 mm cine-camera become the first products to receive the Good Design product designation awarded by Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry.|
|1958||A field zoom lens for television broadcasting is introduced.|
|1959||Through a tie-up with Documat Inc. of the U.S., Canon enters the micrographics market.
Canon enters the market for magnetic heads.
|The Canon Flex, Canon's first SLR camera, is introduced.
The Synchroreader is introduced.
|1960||Canon develops a magnetic head for use in VTRs.|
|1961||The company's main factory in Toride (today, the Toride Plant) is completed.||"Electric-eye" boom is sparked by the introduction of the Canonet.
Canon completes Japan's first rotary microfilm system.