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No. 356, May 1999

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Japanese Companies in the US


PHOTO EQUIPMENT AND COPIERS

TOSHIBA TEC CORP. — formed in January after TEC CORP., a major maker of point- of-sale systems and electronic cash registers, bought TOSHIBA CORP.'s copier business — has mapped out an aggressive expansion plan for the United States. It has introduced a line of digital copiers under both its own name and those of other vendors. Toshiba TEC products currently are sold through 350 or so office machine dealers. However, the Tokyo-headquartered company would like to acquire about 20 smaller dealers that can integrate business machines and computer equipment and launch direct marketing as a complement to sales through dealers.

Redesigning its M2 digital recorder for a broader market, HITACHI, LTD. introduced a product that captures video, audio and still photographs in a single unit the size of most digital cameras. The M2L, which costs just under $1,000, comes with a 16-MB PC card that can store up to 1-1/2 minutes of video footage or 200 still images for transfer to a computer. It also can be upgraded to a 260-MB or a 1-GB PC card. The latter holds up to 2 hours of full-motion video, 12,000 photographs and 16 hours of audio.

An exchange rate of ¥120=$1.00 was used in this report. aaaaa

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