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 user 2006-11-01 at 12:30:00 pm Views: 66
  • #16744

    Inkjet Printer Price Competition Benefits Users, Hurts Canon
    NOV 06 – Canon Inc. posted a 15 percent rise in third-quarter profit on
    strong sales of digital cameras and a weaker yen but disappointed some
    investors by not raising its outlook, citing a price slump in inkjet
    printers.Its printer rivals, Lexmark and Seiko Epson Corp., both
    watched their share prices tumble this week after giving dull earnings
    outlooks, also warning about tough competition and slower-than-expected
    sales of ink and paper.Canon, the world’s top maker of copiers and
    digital cameras, reiterated its net income forecast to climb 14.6
    percent to 440 billion yen ($3.71 billion) in 2006. That falls short of
    the mean analyst estimate for 445.6 billion yen.The company’s stock has
    rallied nearly 20 percent over the past two months in anticipation that
    digital camera sales and currency fluctuations would boost
    earnings.”There have been excessive hopes for upward revisions placed
    on Canon,” said Mitsushige Akino, a fund manager at Ichiyoshi
    Investment Management. “It’s difficult for its share prices to advance
    from here on.”But still, Canon aims for a seventh year of record
    earnings on strong demand for its wide line-up of office gear and
    digital cameras, luring both professionals and consumers.The company
    raised its digital camera shipment target for the year to 20.65 million
    units from an earlier forecast of 20 million, which includes a rise of
    50,000 units in single-lens reflex (SLR) models to 2.45 million
    units.Camera maker Nikon Corp. raised its earnings forecast on
    Thursday, citing a weaker yen. The company expects net income of 45
    billion yen, up 22 percent from its previous estimate. It had 28.9
    billion yen profit in fiscal 2005.Canon also raised its chip stepper
    shipment target for the year to 188 units from its prior forecast of
    180 units, while lowering its target for LCD steppers to 63 units from
    66 units.Canon is the world’s third-largest maker of chip steppers,
    complex machines used to print circuitry onto chips, trailing ASML in
    the Netherlands and Japan’s Nikon.In the third quarter, Canon’s net
    income rose to 115.6 billion yen from 100.6 billion yen a year ago,
    again helped by the currency impact, and strong sales of printers and
    digital cameras. Sales gained 12.5 percent to 988 billion yen.Quarterly
    sales of its office equipments rose 6.9 percent to 639.5 billion yen,
    making up 65 percent of the total revenue.Revenue of cameras and lenses
    jumped 15.7 percent to 235.1 billion yen, while sales of digital
    cameras rose 29 percent on a unit basis.Revenue in the optical products
    segment, which included some new subsidiaries, surged 46.9 percent to
    113.4 billion yen.The company edged up its annual operating profit
    forecast by 0.1 percent to 691 billion yen. It also increased its sales
    estimate by 0.2 percent to 4.14 trillion yen.

    printer prices are falling beyond the company’s initial expectations,
    Canon’s senior managing director Toshizo Tanaka said.Prices of
    multifunctional models are expected to drop 20 percent this year, more
    than the estimated 15 percent for single-function devices, he
    said.Canon revised its currency estimates for the full-year. It expects
    the yen to trade against the dollar at 115.61, and 145.35 versus the
    euro. That compares with its earlier forecast rates of 114.76 and
    142.70 respectively.Shares in Canon closed 1.7 percent higher at 6,650
    yen before the company announced its results, outperforming a 0.67
    percent rise in the Nikkei index.

    Canon printer sales rise
    2006 — Tokyo (JPN): According to unaudited figures, sales of Canon’s
    office imaging products, including photocopiers, fell by 1.9 percent to
    ¥270 billion ($2.27 billion ) in Q2 2006 from ¥275.3 billion in Q2
    2005. Q2 sales of computer peripherals, which include inkjet printers,
    increased by 15.3 percent to ¥346 billion, from ¥300 billion in the
    pervious year.The company’s consolidated net sales for the quarter were
    ¥988 billion, up 12.5 percent on last year’s ¥879 billion.Net income
    increased by 14.9 percent to ¥116 billion, compared to ¥101 billion a
    year earlier.Diluted EPS was ¥86.78, compared to ¥75.54 in Q2 2005.