Rihachi Mizuno was born in 1884 in Ogaki, Gifu Prefecture, a town hit by a major earthquake in 1891. At the age of 13 he left for Osaka with the hope of rebuilding the Mizuno family fortune. At the age of 18 he saw a baseball game played by the Daisan High School baseball club and was immediately fascinated.
After returning to Osaka from service in the Russo-Japanese war, in 1906 he established Mizuno Brothers Ltd and started selling order made athletic uniforms. With a focus on production technologies, he also began to manufacture sports equipment. He hosted the Kansai Students' Federation Baseball Championship. In the same year the company began to manufacture baseball gloves and baseballs.
In 1936, on the 30th anniversary of the company's founding, Mizuno began to produce gliders under the theme of 'Sports: from land to sea and sky.' Within a few years, a Mizuno glider set the Japanese record for height and time aloft for a glider.
After the Second World War, Mizuno obtained many patents and utility model rights, and continued to manufacture products of exceptional functionality and quality. Mizuno became more actively involved with the Olympics with each of the games held in Japan - the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, the 1972 Sapporo Winter Olympics, and the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics.
As a Gold Sponsor at the Nagano Olympics, Mizuno provided the outfits (made completely of recyclable materials) for over 24,000 people, both staff and volunteers.
At Mizuno we pledge to put our wholehearted effort into building a peaceful, healthy world through the promotion of sports in the 21st century. In particular we wish to help children around the world enjoy sports and grow up healthy in body and mind.