Thursday, August 16, 2012

MFP Wars "The Final 5 Prophecy" Sharp is...

A couple of years ago I posted a few blogs in reference to what copier/mfp manufacturers would make up the "The Final Five".  There were many comments made when I left Sharp Corporation out of "The Final Five".  My guess is the people commenting were die hard Sharp enthusiasts and that's not a bad thing.

Back in the mid to late eighties, Sharp ruled the copier industry!  It seemed like I was always up against a sharp copier when I was competing for new business.  In the eighties Ikon (Alco) was buying up Sharp dealerships left and right.  Many dealer owners walked away with pockets full of cash.
However, in the copier business no manufacturer ever stays on top for more than a few years.  Thus in the nineties the beginning of the end for Sharp came one day as Ikon dropped Sharp from their portfolio in lieu of Canon and Ricoh.  Since that time Sharp has been playing catch up trying to regain double digit market share in the US.

In recent weeks, many Internet sources revealed that Sharp Corporation was in dire straits and they had limited cash reserves.  Today, saw a report from Reuters that Sharp Corporation is looking to sell the copier division in order to raise much needed cash. The report went on to state that Kyocera was interested in some type of acquisition.

As soon as the news broke, many Print4Pay Hotel members commented about the report from Reuters.  I thought I would share some of these here.

"Beginning of The era of The final five?"
"Sharp sales reps are going to have to start "tap dancing" when trying to close copier deals because you know every competitive sales rep will have this one pre-printed and ready to hand out to Decision makers."
"We know what Kyocera is after.

Daikin is interested in the Air Conditioner business.

Daiwa wants the real estate.

There are probably many more interested vendors in the background."

"Things are getting a lot worse a lot faster than I expected.
Can you say, Kyo-Sharp-cera!
noooo, how about Shacera or Kyoarp, even kyoharp (sounds like good beer)

These are just a few of the comments and I'm sure in the next few days we'll have many more.  One interesting note is that we had a Senior VP of Sharp USA Marketing register for the forums today.  I'm thinking he couldn't believe the news and had to check it out.

Soon after a few another Reuters report surfaced about Sharp and this report made no mention of Sharp selling the copier division, however there was this statement by Sharp spokeswoman Miyuki Nakayama "It is true that we are considering a number of options, and we will announce these when a decision has been made."

With all of this news it seems that the writing is on the wall for Sharp's copier/mfp division. Would love to hear from others on this.

-=Good Selling=-


Mike Marusic said...

You need to keep these up to date. By the time you published, Sharp Corporation issued a statement saying the story was false. All the major news organizations have clarified that copiers are not for sale, and pointed out the profitability of the Sharp Copier Division. Reuters has also said the story was not true.

Mike Marusic said...

By the time this was posted, most of the press, including Reuters was already saying the story was wrong. Sharp had issued a release saying that it was simply not the case. Why would you get rid of your most profitable unit? Anyway, I guess people like to speculate but all of the press is saying the story was wrong.

Art Post said...


Maybe you can do a better job? This was written yesterday when the story broke, sorry you were a day late in reading. Also there HAS BEEN no statement by Rueters because the information came from Nikkei, get YOUR facts straight!!! You may also want to reference to the part about the Sharp statement that stated Sharp is looking ALL avenues.

Art Post said...

BTW Mike:

There are two stories on Reuters, neither one has a retraction so THERE take THAT!