Gakken Holdings Co., Ltd. is a Japanese education company with a focuses on illustrated and picture books, drill books and other educational materials including toys and learning services for preparatory schools and the children’s markets. Gakken also publishes general culture and lifestyle books and magazines.

Gakken was founded in 1946 by Hideto Furuoka and turned into the holding company Gakken Holdings Co. Ltd. in 2009, which was divided in 2010 into Gakken Jyuku Holdings Co., Ltd. and Gakken Shuppan Holdings Co., Ltd.

The Direct Sales segment produces educational materials, picture story books and others for nursery school and kindergarten children, magazines for child-care workers, kindergarten supplies, textbooks for schools and public offices, video software, office automation (OA) equipment, nursing care goods and more. The Commercial segment distributes magazines, books and others through subscription agents. The Cross Media division sells books and magazines through mobile apps and websites.

In 2010, Hiroaki Miyahara announced Gakken would transition from a publishing company to a “content-creation company.”

Gakken formed recent alliances with the preparatory school management companies Meiko Network Japan Co., Ltd., Waseda School Co., Ltd., and Sozogakuen Co., Ltd., and partnered with Kosaido Co., Ltd. in 2008.

Analysis & Key Developments


Gakken’s corporate revenues rose for the fourth year in a row to almost 96 billion JPY in 2015, while publishing sales continuously declined, to 28 billion JPY in 2015. No information on profitability was available for 2015.

Turnover is split almost evenly between publishing and educational services and products.

After a significant slump in 2009, Gakken nearly recovered its pre-crisis level. Profits were consolidated and tripled in 2012 to 1.54 billion JPY from 550 million JPY in 2011.

Internal Organization

In 2009, Gakken changed its name from Gakken Co. Ltd. to Gakken Holdings Co. Ltd.


Gakken has offices in China (Beijing, Shanghai, Hongkong), Singapore and Malaysia, and operates school support programs in Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, and Myanmar.


Gakken’s educational products and services are supported by Gakken’s corporate network, which brings students online access.

Note: For the Global Ranking 2014, we were able to reassess Gakken’s income and differentiate between revenues from publishing and other, educational, services.

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