*NEWS*RICOH OUTLINES 2006 STRATEGY

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*NEWS*RICOH OUTLINES 2006 STRATEGY

 user 2006-02-10 at 11:19:00 am Views: 87
  • #14128

    Ricoh outlines 2006 strategy
    New products and technology to win users
    Printer
    and document management specialist Ricoh this week outlined plans for
    major new products and technology designed to appeal to IT directors by
    lowering costs and improving the manageability of their printingg
    solutions.
    Currently in beta in the UK, @Remote is an internet-based
    support service for the remote management of multi-function devices
    (MFDs), printers and other output devices which are connected to the
    network.
    It automates the time-consuming task of meter reading and
    toner ordering, freeing up IT administrators to take on more important
    tasks, and gives senior IT staff greater visibility into their printing
    devices so they can manage their fleet better, according to Ricoh.
    The
    firm’s UK marketing director, Chas Moloney, said the system also
    monitors the status of devices connected to the network and will
    trigger a service call if it detects potential printer failures, thus
    reducing the management burden for IT and increasing revenue by
    limiting downtime.
    “The challenge we face is that printing is a low
    agenda item for the IT manager,” said Moloney. “We are trying to tell
    them how much cost is leaving their business from a print perspective
    and the huge opportunities for savings that could be made.”
    Ricoh
    also revealed it will unveil new ink technology in the UK, which is
    designed to dry faster than conventional inkjet ink so it can print
    faster and increase user productivity.
    According to the firm’s
    dealer sales director, Paul Cheetham, the new Gel technology is set to
    be embedded in up to five new “cost effective and ergonomically
    designed products”, aimed at the low volume market, for release this
    April.
    The announcements came during a press event in New York to
    showcase the firm’s new product demonstration centre there, which will
    be complemented by the launch of a similar centre in the UK this spring.
    The
    Ricoh Technology Portal is a purpose-built complex that allows IT
    administrators to construct and view their existing printing set-up,
    see where productivity and cost is being wasted and demo potential
    solutions.
    The centres highlight the company’s strategy of engaging
    closer with IT managers to create solutions tailored to the specific
    needs of their business, said Ricoh.
    “Nothing is worse when you are
    buying something than for the vendor to say ‘this is how it works, but
    it will be different when you put it in your environment,” argued
    Moloney. “This portal will give the IT manager confidence that it will
    work in their unique environment, because no two companies are the
    same.”
    The portal can also enable IT directors to satisfy the
    growing concerns of securing devices, legislative compliance, and
    integrating printing devices with back office systems, added Andrew
    Young, manager at the New York TechnoPortal.
    Ricoh also announced
    last week that it will be launching a new division, Ricoh Printing
    Solutions, into the UK within the next couple of months, targeting the
    high volume datacenter market with products the company acquired when
    it bought Hitachi Printing Solutions in 2004.