Konica Minolta and NEC strengthen cooperation to promote DX by utilising local 5G
Konica Minolta, Inc. (Konica Minolta) and NEC Corporation (NEC) announced that they have agreed to collaborate as partners to promote digital transformation (DX) utilising 5G in the fields of imaging IoT/AI technologies, working styles, healthcare, and manufacturing. As a first step, Konica Minolta is going to introduce local 5G to its new Takatsuki R&D Building.
In December 2019, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications instituted a "local 5G" for assigning 5G radio wave licenses to companies and local governments other than mobile operators. By utilising local 5G, companies and local governments are able to flexibly build dedicated networks capable of secure and stable ultra-high-speed communication in response to their needs, and DX is expected to occur in a variety of industries.
As the first step in collaborative activities, Konica Minolta and NEC will establish local 5G verification environments using 5G network products (5G core, base stations, terminals, etc.) in the brand new Takatsuki building of Konica Minolta's development base Innovation Garden OSAKA Center, which is scheduled to be completed in October 2020. Using these environments, Konica Minolta will combine its imaging and IoT/AI technologies with a variety of assets, including office equipment and medical equipment, as well as NEC's 5G and AI technologies. Through these efforts, they will increase the value-added to industrial optical systems, medical equipment, and office equipment, thereby contributing to the achievement of Society 5. 0 and SDGs.
With local 5G environments in place, Innovation Garden OSAKA Center will be an open lab where R&D will be conducted in collaboration with co-creation partners. As a result, it will provide new value for the evolution of society by responding to the "wants" of our customers, regardless of industry or scale.
Konica Minolta has long supported Japan's growth by combining the strengths it has cultivated through its businesses with cutting-edge digital technologies to create high value-added products and services, and by offering a wide range of products, including medical equipment, offices, and industrial printing equipment. It also has a strong customer base in Europe and other international markets.
Leveraging the wireless technologies and know-how it has cultivated in its base station business for telecommunications carriers, NEC has developed 5G base stations and begun shipments of commercial equipment. By capitalising on its network strengths, NEC promotes NEC Smart Connectivity as a service business in new areas, creating new value in collaboration with various partners.
 Innovation Garden OSAKA: In August 2019, Innovation Garden OSAKA Front in Grand Front Osaka opened in front of Umeda Station and JR Osaka Station in order to develop imaging IoT/AI technologies in earnest in the Kansai area. The new "Innovation Garden OSAKA Center" in Takatsuki will function as a hub to develop the imaging IoT/AI business and promote open innovation with customers and partner companies.
About Konica Minolta, Inc.
Konica Minolta, Inc. is a global technology company that provides innovative solutions to businesses and society. With its strengths in the combination of its core technologies in advanced imaging, optics, sensing, materials and nano-processing, Konica Minolta is committed to creating new values supporting customers to address challenges in their operations and work processes. Advancing its expertise in digital technologies, the company has been going through business transformation into a digital company, with insights into implicit challenges across the board as ‘One Konica Minolta’ in the era of Internet of the Things (IoT). Konica Minolta is also active in open innovation through various collaborations and alliances with academic, industrial and entrepreneurial partners.Headquartered in Tokyo, Konica Minolta has its Group companies in 50 countries with over 44,300 employees and offers products and services in 150 countries around the world.
About Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe
Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe GmbH, based in Langenhagen, Germany, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Konica Minolta Inc., Tokyo, Japan. Konica Minolta enables its clients to champion the digital era: with its unique imaging expertise and data processing capabilities, Konica Minolta creates relevant solutions for its customers and solves issues faced by society. As a provider of comprehensive IT services, Konica Minolta delivers consultancy and services to optimise business processes with workflow automation. The company further offers its customers solutions and managed services in the field of IT infrastructure and IT security as well as cloud environments. With regard to its office printing solutions, ‘IDC MarketScape: Western Europe Smart Multifunctional Peripheral 2018 Vendor Assessment’ stated that Konica Minolta is ‘recognised globally as a leading smart MFP provider of note’. As a strong partner for the professional printing market, Konica Minolta offers business consulting, state-of-the-art technology and software and has established itself as the production printing market leader for more than a decade in Europe, Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa (InfoSource). In the healthcare sector, Konica Minolta drives digitalisation of clinical workflows and offers a broad range of next-level diagnostic solutions. Its Business Innovation Centre in London and four R & D laboratories in Europe enable Konica Minolta to bring innovation forward by collaborating with its customers as well as academic, industrial and entrepreneurial partners. For its solutions that combine ‘smart service with smart technology’, Konica Minolta was awarded the prestigious ‘Buyers Lab PaceSetter Award for Outstanding Serviceability 2018/2019’ from Keypoint Intelligence. Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe is represented by subsidiaries and distributors in more than 80 countries in Europe, Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa. With almost 10,300 employees (as of April 2019), Konica Minolta Europe earned net sales of over EUR 2.39 billion in financial year 2018/19.
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