In 2008, the operating result improved despite weaker sales. However, an extraordinary loss on the sale of the warehouse property resulted in a consolidated loss for the year.
The Canon Business Solutions (CBS) business area registered further growth in the colour systems segment whereas the market for black-and-white devices again declined. However, the solutions and the managed print services businesses continued to perform very well. Robust copy volumes, particularly in the growing colour segment, generated higher revenue from service contracts. This partially offset the fall in sales business and enabled the margin to recover significantly.
Total demand in the camera and printer markets deteriorated further. Due to the continued price erosion, the Canon Consumer Imaging (CCI) business unit recorded a slight drop in revenue despite higher unit sales in key product segments.
Subsequent to the operating loss posted in the previous year, an operating profit was achieved thanks to the higher gross margin and lower costs. The non-operating result included an extraordinary loss of CHF 16 million on the sale of the warehouse. This deficit will be offset over the next few years through lower costs and greater flexibility in the logistics area. The consolidated annual loss of CHF 18.7 million also comprises a tax effect of CHF 7 million.
The main priority for the current financial year is to safeguard the results in an uncertain economic climate. Incoming orders in 2009 are expected to remain below prior-year figures. Therefore, cost-cutting measures have been introduced to mitigate the effects associated with this predictable development.
The Annual General Meeting of Canon (Switzerland) Ltd will be held on 10 June 2009.