Our late founder, Masao Inagaki, founded ASATSU (Asahi Tsushin-sha) in 1956 with only 4 employees. This small advertising agency with a challenger spirit grew rapidly to become the third largest agency in Japan. And in 1999, the merger with Daiichi Kikaku formed ASATSU-DK (ADK).

Starting January 2019, ADK will transform into a holding company structure with ADK Holdings Inc. (ADKHD) as a pure holding company. ADK will become a collective group of business entities in which each operating company will strengthen professional areas and increase productivity, optimising the output we can offer.

ASATSU INC. (1956-1998)     

March 1956

Established headquarters in Mejiro, Toshima-ku, Tokyo, led by current Chairman Emeritus, Masao Inagaki. Began operations as advertising agency in Kayabacho, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, primarily to handle magazine advertising

May 1967

Head office moved to Shimbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo

January 1984

Resource and professional tie-up with BBDO International, Inc. (currently BBDO Worldwide, Inc.) of USA

October 1987

Listed on second section of Tokyo Stock Exchange

June 1990

Elevated to first section of Tokyo Stock Exchange

May 1991

Establishment of strategic business alliance with Xinhua News Agency of China

February 1994

Establishment of joint-capital venture in Beijing, China, with umbrella company of People’s Daily

July 1995

Head office moved to Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo

August 1998

Resource and professional tie-up with WPP Group plc, one of the world’s top three advertising organizations

Dai-ichi Kikaku Co.,Ltd. (1951-1998)  

December 1951

Establishment of Dai-ichi Kikaku Senden Co., Ltd., at Ginza 7-chome, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, led by Naoya Sakai and Saburo Hotta. Began operations as advertising agency, primarily to handle radio advertising

January 1958

Growth necessitates moving head office to Ginza 8-chome, Chuo-ku, Tokyo

September 1961

Moved head office to Ginza 7-chome, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, and changed name to Dai-ichi Kikaku Co., Ltd.

September 1962

Merged with Futaba Kigyou Co., Ltd. (Chuo-ku, Tokyo) and Keishin-sha Co., Ltd. (Edogawa-ku, Tokyo)

June 1974

Created “DIK Network Partners”, a business tie-up with local agencies

June 1976

Business tie-up with Doyle Dane Bernbach, Inc. (currently DDB Needham Worldwide, Inc.)

November 1981

Moved head office to Ginza 7-chome, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, and administrative office to current location in Uchisaiwaicho, Chuo-ku, Tokyo

October 1988

Merged with Dai-ichi Ad Board Co., Ltd.

September 1996

Went public

ASATSU-DK INC. (1999-2018)                           

January 1999

ASATSU Inc. and Dai-Ichi Kikaku Co., Ltd., merged, marking the beginning of ASATSU-DK

November 2000

Establishment of ASATSU-DK VIETNAM INC.

July 2001

Establishment of Knots Europe B.V.

September 2001

Appointment of Koichiro Naganuma as President & Group COO

April 2002

Establishment of Shanghai Advertising and Decorating Co.,Ltd.

July 2002

ADK Acquires Equity Stake in Animation Studio Eiken

November 2002

Head office moved to “ADK Shochiku Square” Tsukiji,Chuo-ku,Tokyo

April 2003

2003 Establishment of ADK Arts Inc.

November 2004

Establishment of Drill Inc., a joint venture with Dentsu

August 2005

Establishes The University of Tokyo Asatsu-DK China Education Fund

March 2006

The 50th anniversary foundation

May 2006

Establishment of BOYS Inc.

August 2006

Establishment of CGM Marketing, Inc. a joint venture with Dentsu and Digital Garage

September 2006

Establishment of ASP Co., Ltd. a joint venture with Septeni

January 2009

Establishment of Okayama/Takamatsu office by consolidation of Okayama and Takamatsu office

January 2009

Establishment of ADK-FORTUNE PVT. LTD.

January 2009

Establishment of Asatsu (Shanghai) Exposition & Advertising Co., Ltd.

July 2009

Establishment of Moscow Liaison Office

March 2010

Appointment of Yoji Shimizu as Representative Director, President & COO

August 2011

Establishment of ADK Digital Communications Inc.

March 2013

Appointment of Shinichi Ueno as Representative Director, President & Group CEO

June 2014

ADK has relocated its head office to “Toranomon Hills” in Toranomon, Minato-ku

December 2017

Completion of TOB by Bain Capital Private Equity

December 2017

Termination of the Capital and Business Alliance with the WPP Group

March 2018

Delisting from the first section of Tokyo Stock Exchange

ADK Group (2019-)                                

January 2019

Transformed into a holding company structure with ADK Holdings Inc. (ADKHD) as a pure holding company