2008: Panasonic Panworld

Panasonic

On the first of October, Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. (松下電器産業株式会社) officially changed its name to “Panasonic Corporation” (パナソニック株式会社). This should not have been a huge surprise — they’ve been talking about their plans to take on Panasonic as a global name for years. They made the change in North America three years ago. The official announcement of the Japanese change was made back in January, and even the company sign got changed a few days earlier. The nomenclature unification, however, does mark the end of an era for the company. In a couple of years, even the iconic National brand will no longer exist. With consumers all up in the internet, the benefits of having multiple brands for in-store Three-Toaster Monte are outweighed by the hassle of, well, maintaining multiple brands of identical appliances.

Word on the tubes is that Panasonic even changed the lovably-dorky company song (“Let us fill with love, light, and dreams / the morning the future we are birthing”; full lyrics posted in this thread). Don’t worry, though, the new song is just as endearing: “Let us believe in graceful science, believe that this dream shall become the future.”

Matt TREYVAUD
December 3, 2008

Matt Treyvaud is a writer and translator living near Kamakura. He is Néojaponisme's Literature/Language editor and the proprietor of No-sword.

3 Responses

  1. Matt Says:

    I wonder what the National Kid has to say about this.

    http://jp.youtube.com/watch?v=NrskOu5oTpY
    http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/ナショナルキッド

  2. xee Says:

    i still haven’t quite forgiven matsushita denki for asserting their copyright and making some of my favourite finnish electronica dudes change their name.

  3. Matt TREYVAUD Says:

    In their defense, Panasonic have ended up using it as they claimed they wanted to. It just took them a couple of decades.

    That National Kid video is a trip. I wish kids’ shows still used words like “narashimeru” and old pre-standardization readings like 斗 for “tatakau”.