Recession does not deter Canon’s expansion plans

By Diana Lin, The China Post

Canon Marketing (Taiwan) Co., Ltd. introduced new lines of products in an overview of its marketing process in Taiwan and Asia yesterday. Masaharu Tsujii, chairman and CEO for Taiwan operations, began by introducing Canon’s latest Multi-function Products (MFP). Descendants of the MFP line imageRUNNER and imageCLASS were created to serve a wide range of consumers for personal use as well as corporate management. Canon’s products in Taiwan so far have been met with growing demand. In 2001 Canon sales had ranked third on the market. In the first quarter of the fiscal year 2002 the sales surpassed Hewlett-Packard to move up to second on the market.

Sales of Canon goods have doubled in the past year, and the company sees sales doubling yet again in two years as MFPs become more downsized and efficient. Yoroku Adachi, director of Canon Inc. in the Asia Pacific region, took Asia’s sluggish economy, Japan’s in particular, into measure when evaluating Canon’s success. Although economic stagnation is prevalent, demand for Canon products has remained stable, and is likely to grow in the latter half of this year.

Adachi praised Taiwan’s investment climate. Using an international perspective, he also half-jokingly lauded the Taiwanese workforce as generally young and lively, with adequate bilingual skills, thereby giving the Taiwanese market a bright future.

According to Tsujii, as Canon meets with higher demand in Taiwan, the products themselves will be designed with a Chinese format. The MFP line featured machines with “all-in-one” capabilities of a photocopier, a fax machine, a scanner, and a printer within one model. These combined functions made processing material more speedy and efficient.

Katsuichi Shimizu, vice director of digital imaging operations, said: “We want to make our products so that they are recognizably visible as Canon-manufactured.” In the future, Canon wishes to make MFPs that can connect with local area networks and are Internet-proficient.

Taiwan’s entry into the WTO (World Trade Organization) has caused duties and tariffs to drop, but competition remains extremely tough between Canon and other IT brands such as HP, Xerox, and Epson. Tsujii explained: “Epson, for example, has very strong engineering, but their inkjet technology is weaker. The competition allows our standards to remain high.” Other major merits of Canon products include cost-efficient devices that provide high-speed service

Canon has branches all over the world and in most major Asian cities. Canon Marketing (Taiwan) Co., Ltd was established in 2001 as Canon’s 278th overseas branch.