Epson May be Moving More Manufacturing to Europe

MENAFN reports that Seiko Epson of Japan may be moving more of its manufacturing to Europe, as it seeks to minimize the effects of currency fluctuations and also obtain closer proximity to new customers and R&D talent.

Epson already has a manufacturing location in #Italy and may move more manufacturing and design operations to Europe to counteract the effects of a stronger yen, Epson President Minoru Usui said. Usui said Epson’s textile-printing operations in #Italy will serve as an example of his template for boosting profitability.

“In the future it might be advantageous for us to produce close to the main markets, for example in Europe, Usui said in an interview. ‘We’re quite heavily exposed to yen fluctuations. Creating product design functions in Europe, Asia, perhaps R & D in America – that’s the direction I want to take the company in, gradually reducing the weight in Japan.”

The #EuropeanUnion and individual countries are promoting manufacturing and R & D incentives for Asian manufacturers to move operations to the region.

Taiwanese contract manufacturer Hon Hai Precision Industry – otherwise known as Foxconn – is also said to be investing 100mn through next year to expand and build new R & D and design centers in the Czech Republic.

Usui said he wants to use a pair of recent acquisitions in #Italy that provide printing on clothing for the Milanese fashion industry as a model for moving more production, design, sales, and service to Europe, functions that were previously located in Japan.

“Over time we will gradually shift to more localization,” he said.

Epson’s current financial plan includes boosting profits to ¥200bn and sales to ¥1.7tn (15.4bn), up from ¥1.09tn last year.

The Japanese yen has risen 4.53 percent against the euro over the past year, minimizing profits for many Japanese companies.  Epson is said to obtain only about a quarter of its revenue in Japan. Sales and support for businesses could also move to Europe or other venues, said Usui,.

Epson acquired two textile printing and service companies in #Italy in the past two years, and opened a research and development facility in Como, Italy, as it seeks to expand into color-inkjet high-fashion textile printing. It’s also said to be seeking to expand into mass-market clothing printing.

In November 2015, “Epson announced a European investment plan targeting 25-percent regional sales growth in part by opening offices in Berlin, Munich, Lisbon, and Madrid. The Japanese company also has ink cartridge factory in Telford, UK.”

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