What is the world’s long-lasting company? Well, you might already know the answer to this or you might even be able to guess. No, it’s not that one, no I’m not that one either, just kidding, but before we begin let’s take a quick tour of some of the world’s other oldest companies and in the process establish which is the oldest company inindustries like money and bankingpharmaceuticals and entertainment. And by the end of this process, we’ll reveal our planet’s oldest and longest-surviving company.
- Italy’s Banca Monte de Pasque de Siena
So the first of these elder companies is from the big bad world of banking Italy’s Banca Monte de Pasque de Siena is the world’s oldest surviving bank and began handing out loans. Way back in 1472 and later would become Italy’s third-largest bank. In fact, the renaissance period is considered the foundational period of modern banking and between the years 1472 and 1489, five other banks were founded and set off a boom in funding for art and creativity.
- Art Business
The funny thing is you don’t necessarily have to be a patron or a member of the Medici family to invest in art like this and so before we delve further into our planet’s oldest companies. I’d like to write about today’s sponsor. Once upon a time investments in art were once limited to the super-wealthy but today that’s about to change.
Masterworks purchases high-quality art and enables its members to invest in portions of that art from the likes of Pablo Picasso Claude Monet and even Banksy. The art is then held over time until masterworks find the best time to sell. Once sold the returns are distributed to its investors giving everyday people like you and me the opportunity to join the ranks of high-level art collectors. They even offer a secondary market on theirwebsite which allows individuals to buy and sell shares to other members so youdon’t necessarily have to wait until the art is sold.
- Pharmaceuticals Sankogan
Anyway, take a look at the world of Pharmaceuticals Sankogan was established in 1319 in Nara Japan nearly 160 years before. Our Italian bank of Siena specializes in manufacturing a little-known product called Sankogan which is an herbal remedyfor digestive problems like nausea and heartburn. Making it our planet’s oldest pharmaceutical company in fact the emperor of Japan was so impressed with thedrug that in 1330. He dubbed the drug and elixir gifted by the gods well as old as this drug company is, it’scertainly not the oldest. So, how much further do we go back 1200s 900s? Well, a lot further than that.
- Sean’s bar
But while we’re at the 900 mark,let’s take a look at the world’s oldest entertainment establishment. The world’s oldest pub also known as Sean’s bar was established in 900 in a little town called that lone in Ireland. And according to the 2004 Guinness bookof records, it was originally an inn for passing travelers and during a routine renovation, the owners discovered a mudwall carbon dated from 1 000 years priormaking it the world’s oldest entertainment establishment in the world.So, cheers to that okay moving on anyway.
- Hotel & Hospitality
So we’ve mentioned japan already and with good reason because japan has more ancient companies than any other country on earth. Why well japan places greater importance on sustainability and building long-term businesses that can be passed from generation to generation?so with that said japan is home to the second, third, fourth, and fifth oldest companies in the world and three of these are in the hotel and hospitality industry. NishiyamaOnsen Kyung khan has been run by the same family for over 52 generations the hotel was built in the year 705 at the foot of the Kaishimountains in central Japan.
But as impressive as its capacity for survival is it’s still not the world’s oldest surviving company. The oldest existing company in the world as of 2022 is the Japanese company “Congo Gumi” founded in 578 and it’s been in operation for around 144 years. They’ve had a total of 40 presidents selected from within the family or from immediate in-laws but in 2006 they were bought out by the Takamatsu construction group and became a subsidiary. So, all that there’s left to ask is what they do,and what have they been up to for all these years Congo Gumi’s in the construction industry and started out building Buddhist temples which they still do.
Religion has always been a reliable market and the founder Shigemitsu Congo was actually an immigrant from southwest Korea. At the time Buddhism was gaining popularity spreading first from India to China and then to Korea and Japan.And as a skilled temple-building carpenter,he was Congo commissioned to build Buddhist temples throughout Japan and for the next 14 centuries. His company Congo Gumi would build some of Japan’s most recognizable buildings and ancient temples including the remarkable Osaka castle in 1583.