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TOKYO — Fujifilm Business Innovation, formerly known as Fuji Xerox, has agreed to sell its Shanghai-based unit to Chinese office equipment maker EVA Precision Industrial (Weihai) for 62 million yuan ($9.19 million).
Fujifilm Business Equipment Shanghai develops and produces mid- to low-speed printers and toner cartridges for the Chinese market. It employs about 900 people.
Fujifilm Business Innovation and EVA signed the deal on Tuesday, and the sale will be completed on Dec. 1. The transaction is designed to optimize production, and Fujifilm will source $298 million worth of equipment from Fujifilm Business Equipment Shanghai over three years following the sale.
The deal will not involve the transfer of technology.
“Printer heads and other core components will continue to be designed and developed in Japan,” Fujifilm Business Innovation company said.
Founded in 1993, EVA is headquartered in Shenzhen. It produces office equipment and auto parts, and listed in Hong Kong in 2005. It booked a net profit of 150 million Hong Kong dollars ($19.1 million) on revenue of HK$5.1 billion in 2021.
EVA’s revenue from printers and other office equipment came to HK$3.7 billion. It partners with Chinese computer maker Lenovo Group and supplies parts to Fujifilm Business Innovation, according to Chinese news reports. It is set to acquire additional manufacturing know-how through the latest deal.
Chinese authorities are urging companies to domestically design and build computers, printers and other equipment for use by the government, as well as their core components. It only sources approved products from a list of trusted companies — a rule it has applied to a growing number of sectors, from finance to telecommunications.
Foreign-owned businesses are not included in this list, but EVA is. By acquiring Fujifilm Business Equipment, EVA aims to secure approval to sell advanced printers to the government and state-owned companies.
China is pushing for more homegrown IT equipment amid tensions with the U.S. In April, it began considering a requirement that printers and other products be developed or produced domestically to meet national standards for sale in China. There is growing concern in Japan and the U.S. that such moves could lead to more transfers of technology to China.
Despite Fujifilm Business Innovation’s denial that the deal will involve such transfers, “it could be the start of Chinese companies gaining overseas technology and dominating global markets, like what happened with home appliances and rail cars,” an industry insider said.
AuthorJuly 24, 2022 at 9:08 AM
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