Kongo Gumi – Japanese construction company is record holder
Kongo Gumi – Japanese construction company is record holder, of 1427 years in business. It was established in 578 and led by 51 successive generations of the Korean Kongo family. Headquarters was based in Osaka, and in 2006 was absorbed by the Takamatsu consortium.
It specialized in building wooden structures. Firstly, temples and palaces. Secondly, hotels and restaurants. The unique skills of its carpenters, joiners and woodcarvers, have given Kongo Gumi the reputation of one of the most solid companies in the industry.
After World War II, it expanded into residential and industrial construction. It earned more, but lost the uniqueness. At the turn of the XX and XXI centuries, representatives of the 51st generation were seduced by the vision of huge profits. Brought by housing prices rising at a rapid pace. To multiply them, they took larger loans, and when the bubble in the real estate market burst. They were left with a giant debt. As a result, in 2005, the oldest company in the world went bankrupt.