Kokichi Mikimoto became the first in the world to successfully culture a semi-spherical pearl on July 11, 1893. Japan's first pearl specialty boutique, the Mikimoto Pearl Store was opened in Tokyo's Ginza shopping district in 1899. In 1913, the first overseas Mikimoto Pearl Store opened in London, soon to be followed by Mikimoto locations in New York, Paris, and other major cities. In 1972, the company name was changed to K. Mikimoto & Co., Ltd. Expanding to include diamonds and other precious stones, Mikimoto became known as a comprehensive jeweler with an extensive line of quality items. n addition to the Tokyo Main Store with its prestigious Ginza address, Mikimoto stores were opened not only throughout Japan but also on Fifth Avenue in New York, Place Vendome in Paris, and New Bond Street in London.