Saihei Hirose (later head of the board of directors), then general manager of the Besshi copper mine, and his fellow workers continued to operate the mine during the turmoil of the Meiji Restoration (1868).They introduced technologies and equipment from abroad at their earliest opportunities, dramatically increasing productivity.
Each time they suffered disastrous damage from typhoons, smoke pollution caused by copper refining, and all other types of difficulties, they resolved all resulting problems.
With the introduction of Western technologies, the copper production rate increased even further.In addition, new related businesses arose, one after another.
Meanwhile, finance and related business conducted in Osaka developed into a banking business.The warehouse section, originally incorporated in the financial business, became also independent.
Thus, Sumitomo developed into a modern zaibatsu (financial combine) centered on mining, manufacturing and finance.