Canox Corporation had its origins in Gifuya Umekichi Shoten, which was established 112 years ago, in 1897, by founder Kotaro Kanoh near the site of Canox's current headquarters in Nagoya's Nishi Ward for the business of selling steel.
After World War II, the company got off to a new start as a joint stock company in 1948 and was listed on the second section of the Nagoya Stock Exchange in 1961. Changing its name to Kanoh Steel Co., Ltd. in 1962, the company expanded its operations throughout Japan. It built Japan's first steel processing center (coil center) run by a steel trading company at around the same time. This steel processing center grew steadily, and in 2004, it became an independent firm called Sorami Steel Service Co., Ltd. located in Soramicho in Nagoya's Minato Ward, with equity participation by four trading companies (including Canox) and two blast furnace steel makers outside the company's framework of capital affiliations. Sorami Steel Service is the number two coil center in the Tokai region today and boasts strong competitiveness in the automotive sector, among others.
Kanoh Steel merged with Shinshin Shoji, a wholly owned subsidiary of Nisshin Steel Co., Ltd., in 1974. Nissho Iwai Corporation (now Sojitz Corporation) became the lead shareholder through an allotment of new third-party shares in 1983, and Kanoh Steel became Canox in 1991.
The products the company handles encompass the whole range of steel products, including plates and sheets, primarily for the car industry; pipes; stainless and specialty steel; and construction steel. Business volume was approximately 1.12 million tonnes in fiscal 2008, 60% of which was automotive-related, primarily in the Tokai region. Along with 11 offices throughout Japan, from Hokkaido to Kyushu, the affiliates under the company's umbrella along with Sorami Steel Service include coil center Kanoh Steel Sheet Manufacturing Co., Ltd., located in Ichikawa, Chiba Prefecture, and Shin Nihon Steel Pipe Co., Ltd., which handles pipe processing for the automotive industry and is located in Ota, Gunma Prefecture.
Hiroo Sugita became president of Canox in 2003 and intends to carry on the company's dignified history and traditions, saying, "The company's philosophy—contributing to society through corporate activities is a must—was professed before World War II by our second president, Shotaro Kanoh, and the spirit of this philosophy can still be found in Canox's DNA. We want to continue emphasizing the basics of commerce as a reliable trading company."