Japanese Digital Camera Maker Ricoh to Cut Nine Percent of its Workforce

By Ashok Bindra May 27, 2011

Bloomberg News reports that the Japanese office equipment and digital camera maker Ricoh Co. is planning to cut approximately nine percent of its workforce over the next three years. In addition, the company is also consolidating factories to cut cost. The goal is to restore profits in the midst of declining sales, wrote Bloomberg.

As a result, some 10,000 workers worldwide will lose jobs by early 2014, said the company in a statement, according to Bloomberg’s report. Media reports indicate that Ricoh’s workforce in Japan is around 40,000 while overseas the number is over 68,000, making for a total workforce of 108,000. Tokyo-based Ricoh said it expects that the steps taken will save the company about $739 million by next fiscal year and boost its operating profit by $1.726 billion in three years.

While the sales have been going south for last few years, the March 11 earthquake and subsequent tsunami have damaged its facilities. Consequently, Ricoh is looking at ways to improve its operating profit.

At a press conference in Tokyo, Ricoh’s President Shiro Kondo said, “We need to make the painful reforms to recover earnings. The quake had a big impact on us, as most of our major plants in Japan are concentrated in the northeast.”

As per the report, Ricoh has set a target of 210 billion yen in operating profit with sales revenue of at least 2.4 trillion yen by March 2014. By comparison, the company reported a profit of 60.2 billion yen on sales of 1.94 trillion yen last fiscal year. According to Bloomberg, Ricoh based its earnings goals on exchange rates of 85 yen against the dollar and 120 yen per euro.

Last month, the office equipment maker informed the press that all production lines at Ricoh Printing Systems have resumed operation, including operations at Ricoh Optical Industries and Hasama Ricoh, Inc. Assembly lines at Tohoku Ricoh Co., Ltd. have also resumed full operation since April 11.

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Ashok Bindra is a veteran writer and editor with more than 25 years of editorial experience covering RF/wireless technologies, semiconductors and power electronics. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Carrie Schmelkin

TechZone360 Contributor

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