Japan's Fujifilm Holdings has announced that subsidiary Fuji Xerox will terminate its sales partnership with Xerox and rebrand under a new name, tentatively Fujifilm Business Innovation, effective April 2021. Fuji Xerox affiliates outside Japan will also change their names on April 1, 2021, but their new names will be announced at a later date. Fujifilm also outlined a new focus on technologies related to the cloud, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things.
| "Opens doors": Kouichi Tamai,
president Fuji Xerox
The move comes two months after US-based Xerox agreed to sell its 25% stake in joint venture Fuji Xerox for $2.3 billion, after billionaire Xerox investors Carl Icahn and Darwin Deason blocked a proposed $6 billion merger deal between the two companies. As part of the deal, Fujifilm agreed to drop a $1 billion lawsuit against Xerox over the failed merger.
“Fuji Xerox Co., Ltd. has come to a decision to end the Technology Agreement with Xerox Corporation on the agreement’s expiration date, March 31, 2021, and notified Xerox Corporation of its decision,” said Fujifilm in a January 6 statement from Tokyo.
“Fuji Xerox and Xerox Corporation have benefitted from the shared use of technologies each company independently developed. Today, however, thanks to improvements in the speed and level of Fuji Xerox’s product development, Fuji Xerox develops, manufactures and delivers its original products to Xerox Corporation based on Fuji Xerox’s unique technologies. As such, Fuji Xerox will continue to provide Xerox products based on Fuji Xerox technologies after the Technology Agreement with Xerox Corporation ends.
“Further, under the Technology Agreement, which provided the sales territories for each company, Fuji Xerox has been engaged in sales activities in the Asia-Pacific region with the “Fuji Xerox” brand whereas Xerox Corporation has been engaged in sales with the “Xerox” brand in the other regions. The decision to end the Technology Agreement will result in the removal of such sales territory restrictions from April 2021, paving the way for Fuji Xerox to expand its business worldwide under a new original brand.”
Fuji Xerox will change its company name to “FUJIFILM Business Innovation Corp.” as of April 1, 2021. “It will also swiftly work to strengthen its document and adjacent businesses, and expand into new business areas. Fuji Xerox aims to foster innovation with the other companies in the Fujifilm Group by accelerating the market introduction of solutions and services that build on technologies related to the cloud, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things.”
Kouichi Tamai, president and representative director of Fuji Xerox, said: “Fuji Xerox is now strongly positioned to conduct businesses dynamically and with more liberty in a truly global manner. Today’s announcement of ending the Technology Agreement with Xerox Corporation opens doors for Fuji Xerox to, after April 2021, utilize our own technologies and synergize with technologies owned by other Fujifilm Group companies to produce/market products and solutions under our own new brand worldwide.
“Additionally, becoming a wholly owned company of FUJIFILM Holdings Corporation as announced in November enables us to make business decisions more efficiently regarding investing in new businesses, building alliances, and pursuing acquisitions with a worldwide perspective. These new exciting steps are for all our customers – both our current customers in the Asia-Pacific region as well as our future customers in the US/EU region. By continuously developing innovative products and solutions that improve efficiency, we will help them resolve their business challenges.”
The product supply agreement with Xerox will continue to be effective despite the expiration of the Technology Agreement, and Fuji Xerox and Xerox Corporation will continue to act as each other’s product supplier, he said.
Fuji Xerox affiliates and sales companies in and outside Japan will also change their names respectively on April 1, 2021, but their new names will be announced at a later date.
“Fuji Xerox aims to foster innovation with the other companies in the Fujifilm Group by accelerating the market introduction of solutions and services that build on technologies related to the cloud, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things,” said Fujifilm. “Additionally, Fuji Xerox will swiftly work to strengthen its document and adjacent businesses as well as to expand into new business areas, and to bring about business innovations by supporting the use and sharing of knowledge that will enable office workers to further increase their productivity and efficiency.”
Meanwhile, Xerox is pushing ahead with its HP takeover strategy, reportedly preparing to nominate a full board of HP directors as it tries to force HP management to reconsider a $33.5 billion acquisition bid.