Canon profit drops by 7.7 per cent as sales tumble

Caitlin Morrison
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Demand for printers has declined across most of the regions Canon operates in (Source: Getty)

Japanese camera manufacturer Canon has reported a slowdown in sales during the three months to 31 March, as demand declined across its product ranges.

Net sales dropped by seven per cent to ¥767bn (£4.9bn) in the first quarter, down from ¥858bn during the same period of last year.

Operating profit plummeted by 39.4 per cent, to ¥45.7bn from ¥61.3bn, while gross profit fell by 7.7 per cent to ¥405bn from ¥439bn.

The company said demand for office multifunction devices (MFD) - printer/copier combinations - remained at around the same level as for the previous year, but "the market for laser printers shrunk due to the sluggish market in emerging countries". Demand for inkjet printers continued to decline, mainly in emerging countries in Asia.

"As for cameras, although demand for interchangeable-lens digital cameras continued to recover in developed countries, demand across Asia continued to decline compared with last year. Likewise, sales volumes of digital compact cameras declined in all regions," Canon said.

Demand for MFDs is expected to pick up "moderately" in the second quarter, while demand in the laser printer market is expected to stay low for the time being, the group said.

"Likewise, projections for digital compact cameras indicate continued market contraction in all regions, centred mainly on low-priced models," the company added.

The group has forecast a 5.3 per cent year-on-year decrease in sales for 2016, "taking into consideration the prolonged economic slowdown in China and developing countries, along with the negative impact of the revised foreign exchange rate assumptions".

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