Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. has a new, albeit familiar, name.
Effective April 1, the maker of Subaru vehicles will be known as Subaru Corp.
The move, announced last May, is meant to bolster branding at a company that makes everything from industrial products to helicopters but draws the vast majority of its cash from Subaru vehicles. Subaru is the Japanese name for the Pleiades star cluster.
“In recent years, our effort has been expanded from making good products to delivering distinctive value which only Subaru can bring to customers,” said Fuji CEO Yasuyuki Yoshinaga said in a statement. “This change in company name declares Subaru’s determination to thrive as a brand that delivers value.” The company held renaming ceremonies at its head office in Tokyo as well as three other Japanese facilities on Friday.
This is not the first name change in the company’s history.
Chikuhei Nakajima established the Aircraft Research Laboratory in 1917. In 1918, it was was renamed the Nakajima Aircraft Factory. In 1931, it was incorporated as Nakajima Aircraft Co. Ltd.
After World War II, the company reorganized as Fuji Sangyo Co. Ltd. in 1945 and made the switch from aircraft manufacturing to civilian goods, the company said.
In accordance with the Enterprise Reorganization Act in 1950, Fuji Sangyo Co. Ltd. split into 12 companies, which included Fuji Kogyo , Fuji Jidosha Kogyo and Utsunomiya Sharyo .
Those three companies would then join Omiya Fuji Kogyo and Tokyo Fuji Sangyo to form Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. on July 15, 1953.
Fuji’s automobile business began in 1958 with the introduction of the Subaru 360 minicar.