Sumitomo Electric Industries

Sumitomo Electric Industries, Ltd. (SEI)
Traded as TYO: 5802
NAG: 5802
FSE: 5802
Industry Non-ferrous metal
Founded 1897
Headquarters Osaka, Japan
Area served
Key people
Masayoshi Matsumoto (CEO)
Products Automotive, Infocommunications, Electronics, Environment and Energy, Industrial Materials & Others
Revenue Increase 2,159,942 million (2013, consolidated)
Number of employees
206,323 (2013)

Sumitomo Electric Industries, Ltd. (SEI) (住友電気工業株式会社 Sumitomo Denki Kōgyō) is a manufacturer of electric wire and optical fiber cables. Its headquarters are in Chūō-ku, Osaka, Japan. The company's shares are listed in the first section of the Tokyo, Nagoya Stock Exchanges, and the Fukuoka Stock Exchange. In the period ending March 2013, the company reported consolidated sales of US$23 billion (2,159,942 million Japanese yen).

The company was founded in 1897 to produce copper wire for electrical uses. Sumitomo operates in five business fields: Automotive, Information & Communications, Electronics, Environment & Energy, and Industrial materials and is developing in two others: Life Sciences and Materials & Resources. It has more than 350 subsidiaries and over 200,000 employees in more than 30 countries.

Sumitomo Electric has traditionally had an intensive focus on R&D to develop new products. Its technologies have been used in major projects including traffic control in Thailand, improvement of telecom networks in Nigeria, membrane technology for waste water treatment in Korea, and bridge construction in Germany.

Sumitomo Electric's electrical wiring harness systems, which are used to send information and energy to automobiles, hold the second largest market share in the world. Sumitomo Electric also continues to be the leading manufacturer of composite semiconductors (GaAs, GaN, InP), which are widely used in semiconductor lasers, LEDs, and mobile telecommunications devices. The company is one of the top three manufacturers in the world of optical fiber.


1897 to 1950[1]

1951 to 2000[2]

2001 to present[3]

Business Units

Sumitomo Electric and its global subsidiaries and affiliates undertake product development, manufacturing and marketing, as well as service provision in the five business divisions: “Automotive,” “Infocommunications,” “Electronics,” “Environment and Energy,” and “Industrial Materials & Others.”


The automotive segment accounts for 50% of Sumitomo Electric's annual sales. With the aim of realizing an automotive society characterized by safety, comfort, and environmental responsibility, Sumitomo Electric supplies the global market with a broad range of products, including wiring harnesses for in-vehicle data and energy transmission, and anti-vibration rubber.

The automotive wiring harness business commenced in 1949 with supplies to the Occupation Forces for their jeeps. In 1961, for the first time, the company supplied wiring harnesses for four-wheel-drive vehicles. At present, Sumitomo Electric promotes the automotive wiring harness business in a tripartite system, in which Sumitomo Electric takes charge of sales and business planning, Sumitomo Wiring Systems handles design and manufacturing, and AutoNetworks Technologies conduct research and development. As a result, Sumitomo Electric's electrical wiring harness systems, which are used to send information and energy to automobiles, have garnered the second largest market share in the world.


This segment provides key products and devices that support optical communications, such as optical fibers, cables, connectors, fusion splicers, GE-PON (Gigabit Ethernet Passive Optical Network) devices, various network access equipment, as well as electronic devices and antenna products for wireless communications. The division also provides various products for supporting the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) society such as traffic control systems and other Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) devices.

Sumitomo Electric produced optical fiber well ahead of other manufacturers, taking note of the product's great capacity for voluminous, speedy, and assured data transmission, ideal for the advanced information age that was to come. In 1986, Sumitomo Electric developed Z-fiber, pure silica core fiber with the world's lowest transmission loss. This has supported the construction of optical communication networks, such as its wide use in many submarine cables. Sumitomo Electric's optical fibers ranks among the best in optical transmission networks and optical communication devices.


The Sumitomo Electric Group's electronics division supplies various products to manufacturers of smartphones, flat-screen televisions, and other highly advanced electronic goods. Products include base material, wiring, and components for compact and lightweight devices with high functionality, such as flexible printed circuits (FPCs), electronic wires, heat-shrinkable tubing, fine polymer products, and compound semiconductors. Capitalizing on compound semiconductor development and manufacturing-knowledge accumulated over many years, Sumitomo Electric succeeded in developing and mass-producing the world's first gallium nitride substances. Sumitomo Electric also continues to be the leading manufacturer of composite semiconductors (GaAs, GaN, InP), which are widely used in semiconductor lasers, LEDs, and mobile telecommunications devices.

Environment and Energy[7]

This division provides electric wire and cable products that underpin stable energy supply. They include copper wire rods from which various types of electric wires and cables are made, power cables that are indispensable for the supply of high-voltage electricity, and trolley wires for railways. This business segment also supplies magnet wires used in household appliances, automotive electric components, and industrial motors- including hybrid products of rubber, plastic, and ceramics resulting from our development of wire coating technologies- to many different branches of industry.

Industrial Materials[8]

Hard metal products, such as cutting tools, are essential for high-speed, high-performance, and high-precision mechanical processing. This division manufactures products used in many industries, including special metal wires for prestressed concrete used in civil engineering and construction projects; special steel wires such as steel cords used as tire-reinforcement materials in the automobile industry; and oil-tempered wires for valve springs. This division also makes sintered parts that are used as structural components in automobiles and home electric appliances, ranking among the top 3 in the world.

Starting in 2013, Sumitomo Electric will expand into two more divisions, “Life Sciences” and “Resources” by making full use of the Group's wide-ranging technological capabilities.

Global Projects[9]


Middle East






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