Sanrio and Hello Kitty Timeline
1960 Tsuji Shintarō establishes Yamanashi Silk Center Company.
1973 Yamanashi Silk Center Company renamed Sanrio Company
Sanrio adopts “Small gift, big smile” motto.
1974 – 1986 Birth to growth.
1974 Hello Kitty debuts (unnamed, sitting cat), designed by Shi-
Other characters debuting in the same year: Patty and Jimmy,
Little Twin Stars, My Melody.
1975 The cat kyarakutā is oﬃcially named “Hello Kitty.”
Ichigo Shimbun (Strawberry news) begins publication.
1976 Yonekubo Setsuko becomes Hello Kitty’s second designer.
First depictions of Hello Kitty standing.
Hello Kitty’s backstory created with the introduction of Papa,
Mama, and twin sister, Mimmy.
Sanrio arrives in United States, opens ﬁrst Gift Gate
Boutique in San Jose, Calif. Sanrio, Inc., in San Jose, Calif.,
Sanrio begins licensing its characters to other companies.
1978 Sanrio begins distributing products in Europe.
1980 Yamaguchi Yūko becomes Hello Kitty’s third and long- lasting