Post war Japan, during economic revitalization, General Headquarters (GHQ) carried out dissolution of Japanese financial business conglomerates that were dominating the Japanese financial circles. This major political resolution resulted in the birth of multiple new businesses, Koshoshokai (Kosho & Co.) being one of them. Kosho & Co. originated as an import/export company for clothing fabric, and is the predecessor of Toyo Enterprise, as we know it today. In the midst of the post war chaos, the streets of Ginza, Tokyo became flooded with street stalls selling traditional Japanese items such as kimonos to American officers. Soon, the streets were swarmed with Americans hunting for souvenirs to take back to their home country.
Seeing the vast amount of US military soldiers surrounding the street stalls, an employee of Kosho & Co. came up with a radical idea. The employee devised the creation of a jacket featuring embroidered oriental designs. In order to implement this, craftsmen from cities of Kiryu and Ashikaga were gathered for production. They incorporated the details of a baseball jacket, an already familiar design to the Americans. Due to the scarcity of silk, acetate was used as a substitution, a very similar material. Kosho & Co. sold these jackets on the street stalls, and immediately saw a spike in demand. The word spread to the PX (Post Exchange) of the U.S. Army base, and shortly to all the bases located in Japan and even internationally. Upon inspection of payment sheets, we can confirm that these jackets were labeled as a ‘Souvenir Jacket’ back then.