Yesterday you received news of a merger between Minolta and Konica. I was in Japan at the time and was not able to provide communications to you as I would have wished. While you may know most of this already, let me review the basic facts.
The Boards of Minolta and Konica have agreed that they will bring the two organizations together into a single entity. This was announced formally on January 7th. We have become convinced that the size of our competition, especially in the office equipment field, makes it difficult for either one of us to thrive on our own. Together we will be positioned to excel.
The integration of our operations will take time and many decisions will need to be made along the way. I know everyone has questions about specifics but it is much too early to have these answers. Much of this will be worked out in the months ahead.
I know that this seems like a very sudden and dramatic change, however, growth is necessary for success. With this new organization, we will be poised to make a strong impact on our markets.
Despite the need to proceed with the merger, it is as important that we continue to be successful with our present business. We are in the last quarter of Fiscal 2002. Your work in raising sales, remaining productive and servicing our customers is critical. Minolta and Konica each bring strengths to this new association. Now is the time for us to remember and emphasize our strong points.
As we get more information we will be sharing this with everyone. I thank you in advance for your hard work and cooperation.