Rising to the topTop Seiko Co., Ltd.

Website: Top Seiko Co., Ltd.External site: a new window will open
Category: Japanese Machinery

Aiming to be the best

A machining and manufacturing company based in Nagahama, Shiga Prefecture, Top Seiko Co., Ltd. specializes in machining hard and dense materials. From the time of its foundation in 2001, CEO Yoichi Azai has had one goal: to make his company the top precision machining and manufacturing company in the world.


Top Seiko CEO Yoichi Azai founded the company in 2001

Rolling with the punches

Top Seiko initially started out manufacturing components for electronics but during the recent economic downturn, client orders dried up and they lost over 100 million yen in total revenue. This led the company to diversify and actively seek new clients across industries, ranging from the energy sector to precision medical components. Top Seiko is willing to take on any manufacturing challenge for any customer, provided that the customer designed the components themselves or has the rights to produce the components-they don't produce copied or pirated components.


Up to 25 micron holes drilled with pinpoint precision through the hardest substances

Overcoming unique challenges

Top Seiko produces components designed by other companies, and many of these designs are for components that have never been made before or are to be used in environments where even microscopic flaws could be costly. As a result, they often need to develop new, sometimes single-application-specific tools and workflows. These tools are then produced by tool-manufacturing companies according to Top Seiko's specifications. For metals, the tools are made from tungsten carbide; for ceramics, they use diamonds. When paired with their automated, programmable machinery, they can produce components with an accuracy of within 1.5 microns. In their 13 years of operation, they haven't had a single major mistake, and the few errors they do make are always in the initial development phase of each job, when they deliberately push the limits to find out exactly where they lie.

Global aspirations

Top Seiko's reliability and attention to detail has gained them customers throughout Japan as well as in Taiwan, Singapore, Europe and the U.S. They're actively seeking new customers in the States, where many industries require increasingly precise and intricately made components. These new developments often require Top Seiko to push their own limits and improve their abilities even further. International expansion has always been part of the company's business plan, and it has links to international student exchange programs and has even hired a graduate from one of those programs to work in its international sales department.


A microscopic and rather cute bear showcasing Top Seiko's manufacturing capabilities


An engineer works on the factory floor

There are very few, if any, other companies that can drill a perfect 25 micron hole into some of the hardest substances on earth. As Top Seiko admits, very few customers need that kind of capability; however, the niche does exist and Top Seiko is determined to keep working toward their goal of being the top company in that niche. As the company continues to develop, refine and perfect its workflows, it constantly pushes the limits of what can be done with those substances. As human innovation develops even newer ceramics and composites to handle ever more extreme temperatures and pressures, Top Seiko aims to remain at the vanguard of turning those substances into cutting-edge components.