The year 2001 marked the 80th year since the founding of Mitsubishi Electric. It is also the year that we adopted "Changes for the Better" as our corporate statement. This statement expresses our commitment to ongoing improvement with the aim of continuously creating better products. The story below outlines how the Mitsubishi logo first came about, and how it and the corporate slogan have evolved into what is used today.
Origin of the Mitsubishi Logo
In the 1870s, the shipping company Tsukumo Shokai, which was the precursor of Mitsubishi, used a triangular water chestnut icon on its ships' flags, and it is from this icon that the current three-diamond Mitsubishi icon originated. It is derived from the three-layer chestnut family crest of Yataro Iwasaki, founder of Tsukumo Shokai, and the three-leaved oak family crest of the Yamanouchi family, from the Tosa Clan. Records suggest that the Mitsubishi company name was settled on later.
"Mitsubishi" and the Famous Three-Diamond Mark
The name "Mitsubishi" refers to the three-diamond emblem. "Mitsubishi" is a combination of the words mitsu and hishi. Mitsu means three. Hishi means water chestnut, and Japanese have used the word for a long time to denote a rhombus or diamond shape. Japanese often bend the "h" sound to a "b" sound when it occurs in the middle of a word. So they pronounce the combination of mitsu and hishi as mitsubishi.
Yataro Iwasaki, the founder of the old Mitsubishi organization, chose the three-diamond mark as the emblem for his company. The mark is suggestive of the three-leaf crest of the Tosa Clan, Yataro's first employer, and also of the three stacked rhombuses of the Iwasaki family crest.