Division 1 Report, File 0000000000164.01.19
Kinumoto Light Industries (KLI) is the Empire’s largest employer, a household name known for manufacturing everything from microwaves to tanks. Run by the extensive and fantastically wealthy Kinumoto Clan, KLI has been a dominant name in Imperial commerce for nearly two hundred years.
KLI traces its origins directly to the Engineering Corps established by the last Shogun during the Brimstone Tusk war. During that conflict, the Corps evolved from a motley collection of sappers into an advanced engineering unit capable of tunneling through mountains and building bridges. After the death of Shogun Kinumoto and the establishment of the new office of Imperial Commander under Kohei of Atami, the Engineering Corps became largely ignored by its new military leaders, who favoured traditional methods over the sometimes iconoclastic innovation of the Corps. Clan Kinumoto, who had been removed from their Imperial offices but not barred from power, recognized this opportunity, and invited the (still loyal) body of the Corps to apply their technical expertise to commerce. Subsuming this nucleus of scientists and engineers, Kinumoto Light Industries gradually established itself as a lynchpin of the Imperial economy.
KLI’s early products were almost universally for military applications, and Clan Kinumoto got very, very rich providing goods to the Court who had ousted them from their political seat. Over the course of generations, KLI expanded, willing to innovate and adopt new technologies. The growth of the middle class created a voracious market for consumer goods, and KLI was first to offer that market all of the conveniences of the industrial revolution. By the middle of the 21st century, KLI is better known for its durables - appliances and electronics - than for its military hardware, but both lines of production remain highly profitable for the company.
Rima Kinumoto is the current CEO of KLI, having assumed the title after her father’s early death a decade ago. Intelligent, charming, and attractive, Rima is one of NewEdo’s most famously unattached socialites, seemingly unbothered by societal expectations that would otherwise be wary of an unmarried middle-aged woman. Highly philanthropic, the influential Kinumoto scion is often quoted as saying she has no time for a relationship between the demands of the corporation and dozens of charitable institutions she manages. When asked about her interest in reclaiming the Kinumoto Clan’s claim to the Shogunate, Rima dismisses the subject and was once recorded saying “leave the Empress’s scraps for the boys,” a comment interpreted to suggest that the powerful Clan has not forgiven the Court of the Moon for the Kinumoto’s political ouster two centuries prior.
In its apparent lack of political ambition, KLI differs significantly from its primary commercial rival, Yashin Enterprises. Yashin, owned and managed by the Toru Clan, is often painted as KLI’s dark twin. Where KLI presents itself as a consumer entity that also produces defense goods, Yashin is clearly an arms manufacturer that happens to have a line of (very sexy) durables. The companies’ rivalry is unsubtle and the enmity between the Kinumoto and the Toru is a prominent political axis that very few influential players are able to straddle without consequence.