Doing one thing and doing it well is fine for some, but ITOCHU International is looking for some variety in its life. The North American arm of Japanese trading giant ITOCHU Corporation runs the gamut of product offerings, from aerospace components and building products to textile manufacturing and solar power systems. The company also distributes fresh produce and manufactures high-performance adhesives and sealants. Among ITOCHU's subsidiary companies are Master Halco (a maker of fencing material), PrimeSource Building Products (a distributor of nails and screws), and ITOCHU Prominent USA (a maker of men's and women's garment fabrics). The company primarily operates in Canada, Mexico, and the US.
ITOCHU has been focusing on acquiring North American solar energy companies that have potential for growth through government incentives for clean energy. In 2009 it bought SolarNet, a solar energy systems provider that includes DC Power Systems, a distributor of solar energy systems in the US, and Stellar Energy Solutions. The acquisition of SolarNet gave the company the largest solar distribution network in the US. In 2007 it acquired California wholesale solar panel distributor Solar Depot. In 2011 the company centralized all of its solar energy-related businesses into SolarNet Holdings to provide a stronger, more streamlined approach to its solar energy business.
In all, ITOCHU International operates more than 25 subsidiaries. Other products and services include chemical distribution (ITOCHU Chemicals America), industrial equipment wholesaling (Multiquip), natural gas marketing (Shoreline Gas), broadband communications products wholesaling (Advanced Media Technologies), apparel wholesaling (ITOCHU Prominent USA), aircraft equipment wholesaling (ITOCHU Aviation), and oilseeds processing (Oilseeds International).
Brought to the US in 1918 to sell its parent company's textiles to the North American market, ITOCHU International remained primarily a trading company until the mid-1980s. – less