Big moves are afoot at Konica Minolta.
On March 2, Konica Minolta in Japan announced a management team change, which includes a big change in the U.S. as Sam Errigo was promoted to President and CEO of Konica Minolta Business Solutions U.S.A. Errigo previously served as COO following last year’s restructuring during which Patrick Banno replaced Rick Taylor as CEO. Taylor continues to serve in an independent advisory role to the company.
Konica Minolta has done quite a bit of reshuffling recently. On February 23 it was announced Laura Blackmer, who joined KM from Sharp in 2017 as senior VP, dealer sales, would be promoted to president, dealer sales. On Feb 24 Konica Minolta announced former President and CEO Shoei Yamana would become executive chairman and executive officer, while former senior executive vice president Toshimitsu Taiko would serve as president and CEO. Also on the 24th KM announced a new structure for its board of directors, with an outside director assuming the Chairman position, and outside directors accounting for the majority of the BOD. According to the press release issued, this move “aligns the company’s initiatives to build and further advance a highly transparent system of governance that maintains a clear separation between supervisory and executive functions.”
According to the press release announcing Errigo’s promotion, the new structure is designed to help the company “work on quick recovery in the financial results, completion of the business portfolio transformation until FY2025 and lay out a path toward evolution to a company clearly committed to solving social issues in 2030 and beyond. … Under the leadership of the new President and CEO, the management members will maximize their capabilities as a team in overcoming the challenges the company faces.”
Press releases also pointed to the company’s medium-term business plan, titled DX2022, noting “the Company is accelerating the shift to the Digital Workplace Business by leveraging the customer base of its Office Printing Business and the shift to highly profitable businesses by expanding growth in the measurement, inspection and diagnosis fields, centered on its strength of imaging IoT. … Turning around the Office and Production Print Businesses, as the Company’s core businesses, as soon as possible, and further enhancing the Industry Business that drives earnings generation, Healthcare Business and Industrial Print Business are an urgent management issue. In order to complete the medium-term business portfolio transformation and simultaneously resolve short-term issues, it is necessary to further strengthen execution capabilities and accelerate it.”
It’s no secret that Konica Minolta’s financials have not been stellar; its Q3 FY 2021 announcement saw a 6% decline in revenues from the previous quarter, and it has been hit hard by not only global supply chain shortages, but problems stemming from factory fires that created toner supply shortages. Although its first half of FY 2021 regained losses experienced in FY 2020, its second half saw only a slight increase in revenues and a significant dip in hardware revenues. Join us March 16 for a webinar that takes a closer look at recent OEM financials.
With a focus on digital business ahead, Errigo seems to be a logical choice, having previously been charged with leading digital transformation strategy and proving himself as a thought leader in digital transformation. Errigo is quoted in the KMBS announcement discussing the future direction in the U.S.: “I look forward to working with renewed focus to expand our core technology while forging ahead with solutions to support our clients’ adoption of the Intelligent Connected Workplace, including managed IT services, intelligent information management and video security solutions, as well as other emerging services.”
We believe this will be regarded as a welcome move amongst the independent dealers. The powerful U.S. market is critical to the future success of this OEM and placing management control of U.S. operations in the hands of trusted and respected executives should help smooth some of the recent bumps in KM’s trajectory in these critical markets. It’s a sign of confidence from Japan and an opportunity for this leadership team to carve out some wins on their own terms.