Hoya Corporation, which merged with Pentax Corporation last March, is cutting its Japanese workforce by half â€“ from 800 currently to less than 400 employees. The affected employees are those in sales, production management and development in its digital camera operations.
The financial daily Nikkei in Tokyo said Hoya will also cut its overseas digital camera workforce mostly in sales but the 2,000-strong overseas production workforce will not be affected.
The job cuts are meant to save more than 5 billion yen ($50.7 million) per year in fixed costs and help Hoya return to profitability “on a monthly basis” in the second half of fiscal 2009, according to the report. The Pentax brand has been struggling to compete in the digital camera market dominated by giants Canon and Nikon and currently ranks a far 5th behind Sony and Olympus. Hoya reportedly lost money on an operating basis for the nine months that ended Dec. 31, 2008.