No. 1 copier working on a paper-free world | Inquirer Technology

No. 1 copier working on a paper-free world

/ 10:13 PM September 18, 2011

THE TREND of becoming “green” in the workplace has taken most companies, both in the developed and developing world, quite literally by storm.

The frequent typhoons in the Pacific and hurricanes in North America remind everyone of the phenomenon now known as global warming, all caused by the world’s seven billion people not paying attention when their gradeschool teachers taught the three Rs-reduce, reuse, recycle-in class.

But the people behind the brand “Xerox” are determined to turn offices and homes around the world has paper-free and environmentally friendly as possible.

“We are one of the members of society, so we have to give back for the benefit of everyone, especially our customers,” says Iwao Abe, president of Fuji Xerox Philippines in a recent meeting with Inquirer editors.


Now, it may sound perplexing to some Xerox, which is on the prestigious list of companies whose brand names have become synonymous for whatever it is they do (i.e., Colgate = toothpaste), wants people to use less paper.

After all, their entire business model revolves around people making as much copies of documents as they possibly can, and using endless reams paper every day. Are they trying to lose money on purpose?

The answer, if you have to ask, is no. Fuji Xerox isn’t trying to dig its own grave by turning its original business model on its head.

Like most companies that have lasted half a century, and there aren’t that many, Fuji Xerox has evolved.


“It’s good that our name is synonymous with copying, but it also makes it hard for us because we do much more than that now,” Abe says as a manufacturer of documents management hardware and software. While the act of printing out documents will remain an integral part of any workplace, Abe says the company believes that much is still wasted by printing and copying unnecessarily.

The company’s full line of products in the Philippines include digital printing and publishing systems, digital multifunctional devices and copiers, document management software, supplies and comprehensive document management services.


Aside from other big players such as Canon and Ricoh joining the photocopying game that Xerox once monopolized, the company says it has been a pioneer in coming out with new technology that not only reduces a client’s carbon footprint but cuts expenses as well.

“What’s important for customers nowadays is the total cost of ownership. Then, they want to improve productivity and security,” Abe says. “On top of that, green technology is something people are now paying attention too.”

Many tasks in offices, the company says, no longer require printing documents. Sending out memos, circulating approval forms that need to be signed, and even faxing from one office to another can all be done electronically, the company says.

The company also offers document storage services, which allow firms to do away with stacking boxes full of old printed quarterly presentations and other useless reports, leaving all that shelf space for more important things like picture frames and toys that come with happy meals.

In the country, one of the company’s major markets in the Asia-Pacific region, the company recently launched its new Eco SITE, which stands for its Ecology Showroom, Innovation and Information Center, Technology and Technical center and Education and Environment center.

The Eco SITE, located at the company’s local office on Ayala Avenue in Makati, serves as a training facility cum innovation center where clients can learn about the technical aspects of Fuji Xerox’s products, and how each device can be optimized inside a workplace.

The Eco SITE, which cost P30 million to put up, is equipped with training facilities to allow customers to train, simulate and execute different business tasks.

The goal, the company says, “is to reduce the environmental impact of our activities.”

“Through this, we encourage and inspire our customers and business partners to go green,” the company says. Abe adds it’s by using technology like that offered by Fuji Xerox that companies can balance their desire to grow profits with the need to curb global warming.

But despite the world’s concerted efforts to reduce greenhouse gasses to protect the environment, Abe says there is still a long way to go.

“The percentage of documents being printed is declining, but the actual amount of paper that is being used is still growing,” he says.

Abe adds Fuji Xerox wants to be one of the leaders in the global push for sustainability. The Eco SITE itself is built using environment friendly materials. About 28 percent of its carpet is made of recycled materials. Even more recycled ingredients went into the mix to make the Eco SITE’s walls and even the soundproofing.

The Eco SITE also promotes more obvious environmental-friendly practices in offices that anyone can do. For instance, none of the site’s projector screens are electronically operated, saving power.

He states companies, and more importantly, the government, should also include green policies in their procurement procedures. “In Japan, companies and the government require suppliers to be green,” Abe says, noting that businesses with smaller carbon footprints already have an automatic edge when vying for lucrative contracts and supply deals.

With its environment-friendly equipment, Abe says Fuji Xerox expects to grow its business significantly in the next few years. Another factor is the fact that the Asia-Pacific region is now one of the fastest-growing parts of the world.

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The Philippines will be part of that growth, being the company’s third-largest market in Southeast Asia. “We’ve been growing 20 percent in the Philippines every year for the last three years,” Abe says.

TOPICS: Asia-Pacific, Business, Company, environmental issues, technology
TAGS: Asia-Pacific, Business, Company, environmental issues, technology

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