Gakken Holdings Co. Ltd. is a Japanese book and magazine publisher with a specific focus on educational materials, such as illustrated and pictorial works and drill books for the Japanese school market. It is also active in the general culture and lifestyle markets.
Gakken was founded in 1946 by Hideto Furuoka as an educational book and magazine publisher and producer of educational toys. In late 2009, Gakken Co. Ltd. became a holding company named Gakken Holdings Co. Ltd., followed by the establishment of two intermediate holding companies in 2010: Gakken Jyuku Holdings Co., Ltd and Gakken Shuppan Holdings Co., Ltd
Its Direct Sales segment sells educational materials, picture books, child-care trade magazines, kindergarten supplies, textbooks for schools and public offices, video software, office automation (OA) equipment, and guides for nursing care. The Commercial segment sells magazines, books and others through subscription agents, and the Cross Media division provides books and magazines through mobile devices and the web.
In 2010, the company announced a transition from being a traditional publishing company to a content-creation company.
Gakken formed several recent alliances with the preparatory school management companies Meiko Network Japan Co., Ltd., Waseda School Co., Ltd., and Sozogakuen Co., Ltd., and formed a capital and business alliance with Kosaido Co., Ltd. in 2008.
Key Company Developments 2012
This year, more detailed financial data was available for Gakken’s publishing income separate from other businesses for fiscal year 2012 and 2013 (both ending in September).
Corporate revenues were flat for several years, until net profits increased in 2012 and 2013. Turnover split almost evenly between income from publishing and revenues from educational services and products, which includes preparatory schools, kindergarten, educational toys etc.
The recovery was marked by a tripling of profits, up to 1.54 billion JPY in 2012 from 550 million JPY in 2011.
Ownership, Mergers & Acquisition, Internal Organization
In 2009, Gakken changed its name from Gakken Co. Ltd. to Gakken Holdings Co. Ltd.
Gakken set up offices overseas, with three locations in China (Beijing, Shanghai, Hongkong), along with Singapore and Malaysia.
Gakken operates school support programs internationally, notably in Vietnam and Thailand.
Gakken’s educational products and services focus on backing up all provisions by Gakken’s corporate online network, and by facilitating access and learning of students over the Internet.
Bestselling Authors & Titles
Gakken’s core business continue to be textbooks, educational materials (e.g. science kits), learning toys and stationary.