At that time, they were the smallest hook manufacturer in Japan and all of their hooks were made by hand. In 1963 they introduced a new automated heating facility which catapulted them to the forefront of the Japanese market. In 1974, they introduced fully automated hook making machines and found it necessary to build a second factory in order to meet the demand they had created. In 1976, as the leading Japanese hook manufacturer, Gamakatsu® began building a new factory to produce high quality fishing rods for the Japanese market. After upgrading the hook manufacturing machines in 1986, they expanded their product line. As the result, Gamakatsu® Co. Ltd became a major manufacturer with a full line of high quality fishing rods, hooks, apparel, and fishing related items by 1987. In 1988, after significant upgrades to their automated tempering facilities and further expansion in the hook factory, Gamakatsu® Co. Ltd. opened Gamakatsu® International Co., Ltd. in Thailand and Gamakatsu® Shantou Co. Ltd. in China in 1989. These two factories import hooks from factory in Japan for use in a number of other products that require snelling, rigging, fly tying and packaging. When anglers purchase Gamakatsu® hooks, they are buying an original product made exclusively by GAMAKATSU®.