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Introduction of Group Companies
From Value One Spring 2009 No.24
Celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, secondary wire rod processor Shinsei Kogyo handles demand from the automotive industry primarily in the Tokai region, where it is based as the only company in Japan able to manufacture three varieties of specialty steel wire within the same plant.
Only Manufacturer That Makes Three Kinds of Steel Wire

Secondary wire rod processor Shinsei Kogyo, the only company in Japan able to manufacture three varieties of specialty steel wire—high carbon steel wire, including piano wire; steel wire for cold heading (CH steel wire); and stainless steel wire—within a single plant, is boosting its supply capacity to meet automotive-related demand in the Tokai region.

The company was founded in 1959 to supply leading chain manufacturer Daido Kogyo Co., Ltd. and automotive components manufacturer Tsukiboshi Manufacturing Co., Ltd., now its shareholders, with high carbon steel wire for motorbike spokes. Shinsei Kogyo also received an investment from Iwai Sangyo Company Ltd. (today's Sojitz Corporation).

What sets the company apart is its ability to manufacture three types of specialty steel wire—high carbon steel wire, including piano wire; CH steel wire; and stainless steel wire—within the same plant, which is extremely unusual among secondary wire rod processors. To this end, the heat treatment equipment that Shinsei Kogyo has installed includes a multipurpose strand-type furnace, a batch-type solid solution furnace, two STC furnaces, a bell-type annealing furnace, and five continuous annealing furnaces that can be allotted for use according to product type and size. One of the company's strengths is its ability to flexibly respond to customer requirements for multiple product types in small lots and delivered quickly.

Actual production came to approximately 31,000 tonnes in 2008, of which around 65% was CH steel wire, 20% stainless steel wire, and 15% high carbon steel wire, including piano wire. Around 80% of Shinsei Kogyo's main product, CH steel wire, was for automotive uses, as was a high percentage of the stainless steel and high carbon steel wire.

President Yoshihiro Takei spoke of his intention to devote even more efforts to training the plants' young employees: "Heat treatment techniques along the lines of hardening/quenching and tempering involve unique kinds of expertise, and we view this once-in-a-century downturn as a chance to carefully hand down the techniques."

Mr. Takei says, "We want to actively look into cooperating with other secondary wire rod processors in the Metal One Group. For example, if manufacturers in Tokyo, Nagoya, and Osaka could mutually supply OEM CH steel wire, transport costs and delivery times could be reduced. We would definitely like to see Metal One take the lead on this." There are hopes for developing value chains by making the most of individual companies' special characteristics.

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