Japanese office equipment maker Ricoh Co. will launch a new digital data-based plant in China in April and close its two existing factories by autumn this year to concentrate and update its global production.
The new Asian production hub for multifunction printers, as well as other printing devices, is in addition to its Thai factory supplying the same range of products to the United States amid the ongoing U.S.-China trade row.
Its subsidiary, Ricoh Manufacturing (China) Ltd., will build the plant with a total floor space of 70,000 square meters in Dongguan in the southern province of Guangdong, Ricoh said in a statement released on Thursday.
The new factory will be equipped with cutting-edge robots and automated machines utilizing sales and production data gathered via the internet of things.
The existing two factories operated by its subsidiaries, Ricoh Asia Industry (Shenzhen) Ltd. and Ricoh Components & Products (Shenzhen) Ltd., will close in the spring and autumn of this year, respectively.
"The production volume of office-use printing devices in China will not change," a Ricoh spokesman told NNA on Thursday, adding Ricoh will continue to supply products made in China to Europe and Japan as well as the local market.
The company will negotiate with 4,700 workers at the factories that are closing, with options to move them to the new plant, which is planning to hire 4,000 workers. (NNA/Kyodo)
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