Toto, a well-known brand of toys, dolls, clothing, fashion, furniture and toys, is also known as Ton To. Other popular uses in arts, music and entertainment, TOTO people, an ethnonym of the totopara, or isolated tribe from Totopara, South Bengal, India. TOTO (Toyota tractors), a toy lottery in Singapore.
In the early years of the twentieth century, the TOTO firm was formed by a group of carpenters. The name came from “totto” (meaning “one who plays the lottery”) and “tomada” (meaning “the play”). According to the company’s present-day history, TOTO began as a family business which specialized in woodworking and manufacturing wooden toys for children. The TOTO group soon expanded to include woodworking, printing and paper goods and soon became known all over Asia as one of the most popular toys of its time.
The founder of TOTO, a Mr. Takayama, decided that he wanted to create a unique toy in the same way that Walt Disney, the famous creator of cartoons, had done. He took a picture of his young daughter playing with an elephant, then made a miniature version of the elephant on a wooden platform. When Mr. Takayama’s son, Mr. Shimada, saw the doll he was inspired to try his hand at making one, and the name TOTO was given to it. In fact, it is believed that the first “toto” toys were created back in the mid-twentieth century.
The company’s history has always included stories about how their toy products have been produced at affordable prices, in countries where traditional production methods do not exist. However, due to economic problems, many small and medium-sized businesses are finding it increasingly difficult to compete with the more established firms in the market and are being forced into bankruptcy.
Today, TOTO has remained focused on developing its business worldwide. This has included a strong presence in Europe, North America, and Asia, where the company has had a thriving year-on-year sales growth in recent times. The firm has also developed a wide-ranging educational and cultural program to promote its toys, which has included concerts, workshops, film festivals, educational books and DVDs.
Today, the world-famous toy company is considered to be one of the leading brands of toys and one of the leaders in the world toy industry. It has also become one of the most preferred brand name brands in Asia and a leading brand in the international toy market.