Canon repositions itself as IT & telecom solutions co.

By : |January 28, 2000 0

NEW DELHI: Canon India has undertaken a major initiative to reposition itself
as an IT and telecom solutions provider from being just an office communications
products vendor. Announcing this at the launch of its imageRUNNER range of
products, the company director, Allan Grant, said, "The demands of the
office products today are different from those a few years ago. Canon’s first
digital foray worldwide was in 1992 and then in 1994. Both times the acceptance
was low since networking and spread of Internet was limited. Since the relaunch
of the latest generation of digital products in 1999, Canon’s digital products
have surged ahead."

The company believes that the digital office automation market in India is on
the verge of an explosive growth. The growth of the networking market in
India–which is linked to the growth of digital office products–is pegged at a
conservative estimate of 25 percent. He reckons the market for digital products
in India is expected to grow by 200 percent in 2000–that is 1,000 units per
annum to 3,000 units by the end of 2000 and more than three times by the end of

Canon hopes to capture 30 percent of the digital office automation market.
Its strategy includes setting up digital labs to simulate the work environment
to help trained sales force suggest digital solutions to customers. The two
demonstration labs in Delhi and Mumbai are already in place. It also plans to
increase its channel partners from 48 to 104 during the current year.

The imageRUNNER range of products would be priced in the range of Rs 2 lakh
and 20 lakh. They include imageRUNNER GP 160,GP 210, GP 215, GP 335, GP 405, and
GP 605. The products offer multi-functionality like printing, copying, faxing,
and scanning at a resolution of 1200 dpi. Compatible across all platforms, the
products would be targeted at the government, corporate and defence segments.

Additionally, the company has invested around $1.7 million in setting up a
software development center in New Delhi. This is in keeping with its
repositioning as an IT and telecom solutions company. The center is focussed in
developing embedded software, driver and connectivity solutions. It has already
exported software worth $3 million in the first year of its operation. The
company will also focus its R&D activities in information management.

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