You must have noticed YKK written on zips of most of the products you use on daily basis. Do you know what these three English alphabet letters mean?
The Japanese company, YKK is the world’s largest zipper producer. It was founded in 1934 by a Japanese man Tadao Yoshida.
YKK stands for Yoshida Kōgyō Kabushiki. It is a Japanese manufacturing group spread all over the world. Yoshida Kōgyō Kabushiki in English means Yoshida Industries Limited.
The YKK group does not just manufacture zips but buttons, snaps, buckles and other fasteners as well. While, the machines that make the popular zipper are also its own make.
YKK consists of around 109 companies in 71 countries across the world including Pakistan.
Initially, the zippers were handmade, hence had an inferior quality in comparison with the zips made through machines. The company adopted machine first in 1950 which brought a major technological change and improved quality.
YKK uses different techniques to promote its products. It has even produced an anime ‘Fastening Days’ to market its product. The protagonists of the anime use zipper as a weapon to protect their town.
There still exists a big competitor of YKK and that too from China. The company is called SBS.
Production of both the companies are put together would make over half of the world’s zippers.
YKK zippers are used in a large number of daily-use items including jackets, pants, luggage bags, sleeping bags, military gear and cars.