Skip to Main Contents

Wheelchair Business Transferred to IM Company Reorganizing the wheelchair business into an autonomous, more market-oriented enterprise by integrating all operational functions under unified control

April 17, 2003

As of April 2003, Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. has transferred control of all wheelchair operations previously handled by various group companies -development, manufacture, sales and services - to the IM Company, an in-house company of Yamaha Motor responsible for developing, manufacturing and marketing surface mounters and other industrial robots.
In conjunction with this reorganization, the wheelchair development and manufacture functions have been transferred from Moric Co., Ltd., a Yamaha Motor subsidiary which develops and manufactures electrical parts, to the IM Company, while the wheelchair sales and service functions will also shift to the IM Company, from Yamaha Motor Marketing Japan Co., Ltd., which is in charge of domestic marketing of Yamaha Motor products.

The objectives of this operational transfer are as follows:


Building a comprehensive, autonomous business structure and increasing customer satisfaction by integrating the manufacturing, sales, development and service functions which were previously handled by different companies within the group.


Applying the IM Company's "No. 1 in just-right solutions" policy to the wheelchair business, whose motto is "No. 1 in people-friendly interaction," in order to realize market-oriented product development, sales and services.


Combining industrial robot control technologies with electric-wheelchair developmental technologies to bolster engineering capabilities of the business.


Yamaha Motor, utilizing its proprietary control and driving technologies, has been in the wheelchair business since 1995, helping contribute to the health and welfare of people in today's rapidly aging society.
The current product lineup consists of the JW-1 electric power unit that converts manual wheelchairs into electric-powered versions; the JW-II supplementary power-assist unit, based on the Power Assist System; and the Towny Pass attendant-controlled electro-hybrid wheelchair, all of which are covered by the Japanese Insurance System for Care and Assistance for the Elderly (Kaigo-Hoken System) and are officially approved as local-government-supplied welfare assistance equipment (Hoso-gu).
About 3,500 Yamaha Motor units are sold annually through health and welfare-related channels in Japan, while about 1,200 units are sold annually on an OEM basis in overseas markets, together generating annual sales of about one billion yen.

The size of Japan's combined manual and electric-powered wheelchair market is about 33 billion yen. However, it is expected to expand further as the constantly aging society comes to demand an improved quality of health and welfare service. Transferring control of the wheelchair business signals the start of a reorganization of this segment within the IM Company. Yamaha Motor will now redouble its efforts to realize the type of product development, sales and services that can best meet the mobility requirements of physically challenged and elderly people. Thus, Yamaha Motor aims to help improve the quality of life for the physically challenged, and encourage the elderly to lead a more active life.

Profile of the IM Company

Established as an in-house company within Yamaha Motor:

April 2000

Established as an operational division of Yamaha Motor:

February 1984


Soude-cho, Hamamatsu City, Shizuoka Prefecture


Tsuneji Togami (Director, Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.)

Building Area:

Factory on 6,800 m2, Technical Center on 4,000 m2

Major products:

Industrial robots, surface mounters, wheelchairs

Sales volume:

16.4 billion yen (fiscal year ending March 2002)

Number of employees:


Back to