January 19, 2005
Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd. announced that it will acquire UK-based ink manufacturer Sericol Group, Limited, a leading market share holder in the production of inks for screen printing and for wide format digital industrial inkjets.
Fujifilm has concluded an agreement to acquire Sericol at an acquisition price of approximately 123 million pounds sterling (approximately 24.5 billion yen). Through this acquisition Sericol will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fujifilm and be known as FUJIFILM Sericol Limited.
Sericol is a global corporation engaged in the development, manufacturing and sale of inks for screen and package printing as well as industrial inkjet inks and materials. With inks for screen printing and wide format digital UV inkjet inks, the company maintains a leading market share position worldwide.
Fujifilm has been involved in the development, production and sale of film for platemaking, primarily for offset printing, PS plates and CTP plates for which demand is currently growing rapidly. The company has also been involved for many years in providing various systems such as image processing software for prepress, filmsetters/platesetters, and digital proofing as part of its global-scale printing business. The acquisition will further expand and develop the printing business, one of the core businesses of Fujifilm, as it will extend the company' s business domain into other areas of industrial printing which in the future are expected to grow steadily in demand. The acquisition will also enable Fujifilm to extend its operations into industrial printing and package printing further expanding its existing business range of commercial, publishing and newspaper printing.
The demand for high-speed inkjet UV inks, in which Sericol has a major market share, has been growing dramatically due to the digitalization of printing. UV ink utilizes a technology that hardens ink through its exposure to UV light, giving very fast drying times that improves productivity of printing. Also, UV inks have the ability to print on a wide variety of materials. Because of these and other benefits the popularity of UV inks is expected to grow in the future.
Significant synergistic effects are expected from this acquisition in sales and product development. It will be possible to establish a UV ink system that incorporates superior characteristics by combining photo-polymerization technologies that Fujifilm has been nurturing over the years through the development of photopolymer CTP plates and other products, as well as material technologies for raising the sensitivity levels using Sericol' s existing technologies.
To make further headway toward new growth strategies, a key part of its medium-term management plan, Fujifilm has been aggressively making capital and R&D investments. Fujifilm will continue to actively expand its business through M&As, such as the purchase of Arch Chemicals' Microelectronic Material Business and the acquisition of Sericol Group, expanding its semiconductor processing materials business and printing business.
Fujifilm is planning to expand consolidated sales figures of the printing business from the current approximation of 240 billion yen to approximately 300 billion yen in four years for FY 2008 through this acquisition and expansion of sales.
<Summary of the Sericol Group>
||Established in the UK in 1951.
||Approximately 30 billion yen (group consolidated amount expected for the term ending in December 2004).
||Approximately 1,200 persons (group consolidated figure as of the end of December, 2003).
||Manufacturing plants: Six locations
(UK, US, Australia, China, Brazil and India).
||Two locations (UK and US).
||15 locations (eight in Europe, three in Asia, one each in the US, Japan, Australia and Brazil).