Canon is a well famed name in India’s Printer Market. Canon has been progressing well compared to other players in the consumer printer space. Canon has again played a major role in market by bringing class innovation. Mr. C Sukumaran, Assistant Director, Consumer Systems Products (CSP), Canon has exclusively shared his views with DT about Printer Market. Below are his views:
Q. How do you see the current growth & expectations for consumer printer market?
A. The consumer printer market is constantly evolving, thanks to ever changing technology landscape and customer preferences. Printers are not just limited to offices now. We are also enabling and empowering home segments by giving them access to affordable yet high quality printing. We have witnessed a substantial growth in their dependency on printing technology for their day-to-day activities. Users are more willing to invest in their own printing space rather than reaching out to their nearby printing shops. From a technology perspective, the most important factor that is leading to evolving print requirements by customers would hugely revolve around Cloud Printing, Mobility, Internet of Things, Mass Customization and increased adoption of mobile devices.
Since the launch of PIXMA G-series printers, we have also witnessed a lot of demand towards the ink tank technology among the home segments. The adoption of ink tank printers has increased over the last few months. These changes have given a major boost to the consumer printing space and the overall consumer inkjet printer segment. Canon has time and again played a major role in this market by bringing out best in class technology and innovation in the form of our Canon PIXMA range of printers and other consumer inkjet portfolio.
Q. What are the major challenges for consumer market in India?
A. Canon has been progressing well compared to other players in the consumer printer space, because challenges for us are opportunities to evolve with better solutions.For consumers, affordability is a prime concern and a challenge when it comes to choosing the right printer. Consumer satisfaction is the key priority for us at Canon and we strive to derive solutions and products that are ready to meet all the requirements of consumers and that too at reasonable costs.
Leading in innovations and out-of the box technology adoption, our range of printers have been driving the growth of CSP division. With both Inkjet and Laser industry growing at a good pace, we aim to further mobilize our growth with our range of innovative products and services to become the disruptor in the market. The launch of Canon PIXMA G-series printers and the eventual success of the product stands testimony to our commitment.
Q. What are your first priorities or plans since you had taken new role in the organization?
A. Post donning the hat of the Assistant Director of CSP division, I have been looking after the marketing and sales wing of both Laser and Inkjet printer business in India. The key priority for my division is to empower our consumers to ideate and innovate and supporting them is our range of Laser and Inkjet portfolio. Creating efficiency and capability with utilizing technology across the teams is also be my focus, which I believe would drive our vision to maximize profits, thereby speeding our growth. Boosting the start-up culture in India, Canon CSP division aims to become the partner for the emerging entrepreneurs in India in their growth journey. Targeting them, our MAXIFY range of inkjet printers and expansive Laser printer portfolio have been addressing their print requirements with economical colour network-printing solutions.
We are also looking forward to work closely with Channel partners augmenting our presence in tier-2 and tier-3 cities and increasing our market share.
Q. How do you see the adoption of Laser printer by home users in entry level segment?
A. Each technology and innovation is subjective to the requirements of the consumers. Laser printers are primarily targeted at office environments with high-volume printing requirements at low running cost. SMBs, Government, SOHOs and Large Enterprises are the major drivers for the growth of Laser printers.
While we see less demand coming in from home users for laser printers, but customers who need speed and have high page volume printing are still expected to go for Laser Printers like the Canon laser shot LBP2900B, a robust printer with all the feature benefits for home segments. Canon imageCLASSMF3010 printer, a compact and reliable multi-function solution also targets home office segments catering to their large volume printing requirements.
Low per page cost and price differential are some of the factors that can bring a shift in the preference of consumers. Surprisingly enough, you can purchase a basic laser or inkjet printer for almost the same price.
Q. What will be your key plans for upcoming festive season (OND)?
A. Festive season is a great opportunity for Canon to boost awareness for their products and achieve remarkable
sales volume during this period. For the upcoming festive season, we have a promo offer of Wildcraft bag on specific models of consumer inkjet printers MG2570S, E410, E470 and E560.
Q. What is your current channel strength? Do you have any plan to expand channel base?
A. Channel partners are extremely crucial and imperative to the growth of the organization and Canon believes in nurturing the partnership with channel partners and Value Added Resellers (VARs). To reach out to our customer base and potential clientele in major cities pan India, we have been working closely with them. We believe in aligning all partners across India with one vision of Canon’s plans for India and enhance the direct relationship for optimum profitability. Our Channel strategies are specific to our diverse product lineup.
Canon believes in regular engagement with Channel partners and interacts with them to help them reach out to customers with adequate and correct information. We also help the partner in capital management and advice and guide them in their inventory planning. One of the major aspects of our channel management is to guide them to recruit the right manpower.
We currently have a base of approx. 2000 channel partners working for the CSP division pan India. We plan to increase our strength by 3000, along with focusing on online channels and Large Format Retails.
Q. What are your upcoming plans to boost channel awareness?
A. Our Endeavour is to connect with the channel partners in various ways. Our engagement levels include
partner meets, city based dealer meets, electronic communication etc. We are trying our best to maintain a synergistic relationship to grow in this competitive scenario.
Q. How do you assure excellent service support to your consumers across all regions?
A. Canon’s after sale service is one of the best in the industry and we currently have Canon’s service reach to over 5000 towns for printers providing exemplary customer support and ensuring that our customers’ demands are fulfilled. Aimed at providing improved customer service support and above par excellence among channel partners, Canon runs regular training modules and workshops across India. Canon India makes great efforts to impart training to its partners in order to ensure that, they are technically equipped to give solutions to the concerns of the end customers.
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