The online community of knife collectors, A Knife Family Forged in Steel
Japan, with some products also made in Korea and USA Imperial products are often stamped IIC.
I am still of the opinion this is your maker. Although the better part of the business done by IIC Japan is flatware, I cannot image a company of this size allow another company in Japan to use their trademark. I will keep searching but I do think this is just one where they have stepped outside the normal build
Jan, while I know nothing about Imperial Int'l Cutlery, or Japanese trademark law, I'd very much support your analysis on this one.
The knife looks like it was made by a company that produces flatware, the tang being completely enclosed in synthetic material like that. Which means they probably really know how to make knives that can cut, & from the looks of that blade, it's an excellent slicer. Looks like a decent score to me!
Anthony, clean up the knife & make a sheath for it. Then put it to use & let us know how it performs!