To continue his plan for a franchise of idol groups in Japan, Akimoto Yasushi announced that he would start an idol group in Nanba, Osaka. NMB48's name comes from NaMBa, an alternate romanization of Nanba.
Auditions were held in August 2010, and were broadcast on the TV show "Starhime Sagashitarou", which featured members of SKE48. Initially, 26 girls passed but there will still be inter-auditions to pick the 16 girls who will be Team N. The 26 girls were introduced on October 9th, 2010 at AKB48's Aki Matsuri.
On December 4, 2010, NMB48 announced that Team N and its captain will be announced at the shonichi performance of Team N's first stage. The remaining members will remain kenkyuusei.
On January 1, 2011, NMB48 started performances of its first stage. On March 10, 2011 Team N was formed.
In June 2011, it was announced that NMB48 would be making their single debut with Zetsumetsu Kurokami Shoujo, several months after their first original song Seishun no Lap Time was being performed in the theater. On June 6, the second generation winners were announced at the end of Team N's performance at TDC Hall. The introduction of the 2nd generation brought the total number of members in NMB48 to their goal number of 48.
In August 2011, photos of 2nd generation member Shimada Rena with a boyfriend surfaced on the internet. Initially, no action was taking regarding the photos, but as more photos surfaced and as other scandals were brought to attention by fans, Shimada was suspended from activities for the rest of 2011 starting in September. At this time, Yoshida Akari and Matsuda Shiori were also suspended due to issues balancing school work with work, and Yoshida, Kondo Rina and Watanabe Miyuki were removed from the preliminary senbatsu for NMB's second single due to undisclosed reasons, and replaced with Yamaguchi Yuuki, Yamagishi Natsumi and Murakami Ayaka.
Names in bold are Team Captains
- Mori Ayaka (Graduated July 10, 2011)
- Kodakari Yuuka (Graduated May 6, 2012)
- Jo Eriko (Graduated September 28, 2012)
- Fujita Runa (Graduated October 3, 2012)
- Matsuda Shiori (Graduated October 28, 2012)
- Ota Riona (Graduated October 28, 2012)
- Hikawa Ayame (Graduated December 22, 2012)
- Yamauchi Ayaka (Withdrew November 5, 2010)
- Takiyama Akane (Graduated January 15, 2011)
- Otani Riko (Graduated January 15, 2012)
- Okada Risako (Graduated February 18, 2012)
- Ishikawa Kokoro (Graduated April 28, 2012)
- Hara Mizuki (Graduated April 28, 2012)
- Sato Sorai (Graduated December 21, 2012)
AKB48 Senbatsu Events
- [2011.06.08] AKB48 22nd Single Senbatsu Sousenkyo "Kotoshi mo Gachi Desu"
- [2012.06.06] AKB48 27th Single Senbatsu Sousenkyo "Fan ga Erabu 64 Giseki"
Senbatsu Janken Taikai
- [2011.09.20] AKB48 24th Single Senbatsu Janken Taikai
- [2012.09.18] AKB48 29th Single Senbatsu Janken Taikai
- [2013.02.27] Teppen Tottande! (てっぺんとったんで!)
- [2011.07.20] Zetsumetsu Kurokami Shoujo (絶滅黒髪少女; Extinct Black-haired Girl)
- [2011.10.19] Oh My God! (オーマイガー!)
- [2012.02.08] Junjou U-19 (純情U-19; Innocence Under 19)
- [2012.05.09] Nagiichi (ナギイチ; The Cutest Girl on the Beach)
- [2012.08.08] Virginity (ヴァージニティー)
- [2012.11.07] Kitagawa Kenji (北川健二)
- [2013.06.19] untitled
- [2012.03.27] NMB48 1st Anniversary Special Live
- [2011.06.24] Team N 1st Stage "Dareka no Tame ni" (チームN 1st Stage「誰かのために」)
- [2012.08.21] 2nd Generation Stage "Party ga Hajimaru yo" Senshuuraku (2期生公演「PARTYが始まるよ」千秋楽)
- [2012.09.25] Team N 2nd Stage "Seishun Girls" (チームN 2nd Stage「青春ガールズ」)
- [2011.01.01-2011.05.16] Team N 1st Stage "Dareka no Tame ni" (チームN 1st Stage「誰かのために」)
- [2011.05.19- ] Team N 2nd Stage "Seishun Girls" (チームN 2nd Stage「青春ガールズ」)
- [2012.05.05- ] Team M 1st Stage "Idol no Yoake" (チームM 1st Stage「アイドルの夜明け」)
- [2012.10.10-] Team BII 1st Stage "Aitakatta" (チームBII 1st Stage 「会いたかった」)
- [2011.08.13-2012.05.02] NMB48 2nd Gen Kenkyuusei Stage "Party ga Hajimaru yo" (NMB48 Stage 「PARTYが始まるよ」)
- [2012.04.29-2012.10.06] NMB48 3rd Gen Kenkyuusei Stage "Aitakatta" (NMB48 Stage 「会いたかった」)
- [2013.02.01-] NMB48 Kenkyuusei 1st Stage "Seishun Girls" (NMB48研究生 1st Stage「青春ガールズ」)