Sharp Corporation is a Japanese multinational corporation that designs and manufactures electronic products. Headquartered in Abeno-ku, Osaka, Japan, Sharp employs more than 55,580 people worldwide as of June 2011. The company was founded in September 1912. It takes its name from one of its founder's first inventions, the Ever-Sharp mechanical pencil, which was invented by Tokuji Hayakawa in 1915. Since then it has developed into one of the leading electronics companies in the world. It gained greater public awareness in the United Kingdom when it sponsored Manchester United F.C. from 1982 to 2000, which was a period of great success for the club.
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