Toshiba, Takara and Dai Nippon Printing Linkup in Joint Venture to Promote Innovative Educational Platform and Content|
24 January, 2002
Takara Co., Ltd.
Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd.
Toshiba Corporation, Takara Co. Ltd. And Dai Nippon Printing Co. Ltd. (DNP) today announced that they will together establish Toshiba TD Education Co., Ltd., a joint venture company dedicated to the development and promotion of an innovative education platform supporting educational programs for all age groups and in many and varied subjects. Toshiba TD Education will be incorporated by the end of February and draw on the different strengths of its three partners.
Advances in information technology, including progress in storage technology, are increasingly having an impact on education, making possible new approaches in the classroom and to personal self-development. Toshiba, Takara and DNP have combined their diverse know-how to create the EX-Pad, a versatile platform designed to support many aspects of education, including general education, continuing education, vocational training and certification, and human resources training.
The clam-shell EX-Pad opens up to provide a base for dedicated printed materials that users access via a pen-shaped stylus. Doing so activates application software preinstalled on a Smart MediaTM* flash memory. Touching and tracing the printed pages with the stylus gives access to content as diverse as stories, music and games, and opens the way to an interactive learning experience that involves sight, sound and movement.
The versatility of EX-Pad assures its appeal to a wide range of people, from children to the elderly. Toshiba TD Education will capitalize on this and promote market penetration by first of all targeting specific groups and education market segments: the individual (lifetime education and vocational qualifications); the children's market (music, English-language education and school-admission tests) and the business market (English language and vocational schools). Sales will start this spring, and will fully leverage Toshiba and Takara's sales channels in home appliances and toys, respectively.
The partnership in Toshiba TD Education allows the three partners to promote specific corporate goals and strategies. Toshiba is positioning education as a core element of its business, both in hardware and content; DNP is seeking to expand its printing business and to move in new directions; and Takara is evolving to become a total lifestyle and entertainment company. The new joint venture will allow all three to enter and make inroads into an expanding market.
Each company will play a defined role in the joint venture. Toshiba will develop and manufacture the overall system and develop content creation tools. Takara will create and provide characters and promote sales in toy market. DNP will form a network with content producers and support EX-Pad book production.
The potential of EX-Pad has already won the support of some of Japan's leading educational publishers, and Toshiba TD Education will promote the new platform and develop content in partnership with such companies as Shogakukan Production Co., Ltd., Gakken Co., Ltd., Yamaha Music Media Corporation, ALC Press Inc. and Poplar Publishing Co., Ltd.
Profile of New Joint Venture Company
About Toshiba Corporation
Toshiba Corporation is a leader in information and communications systems, electronic components, consumer products and power generation. The company's integration of these wide-ranging capabilities assures its position as an innovator in advanced components, products and systems. Toshiba has 188,000 employees worldwide and annual sales of over US$47 billion. Visit Toshiba's website at: www.toshiba.co.jp/index.htm
About Takara Co., Ltd.
Takara Co., Ltd. is one of the largest general toy manufacturers in Japan, and takes good care of its original contents such as "Licca-chan" fashion doll, "Choro-Q" miniature car, "Transformers" transforming robot, etc. Its latest big hit includes "Beyblade", a customizable spinning battle top, and "e-kara", a portable home Karaoke system. Takara is now aiming to become a Life Entertaiment company to provide all generations with a sense of play and dreams. Visit Takara's website at http://www.takaratoys.co.jp
About Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd
Dai Nippon Printing (DNP) is one of the world's largest comprehensive printing companies, with annual sales of 1.342 trillion yen and 34,000 employees (as of March 2001). DNP's wide range of businesses include publication printing, commercial printing, smart cards, business forms, network business and electronic components. While DNP maintains a 50% market share in Japan's domestic magazine printing, the company continues to leverage its information processing techniques and printing technologies to promotes cross-media solutions. In addition to providing packaged media such as CD-ROM and DVD, DNP provides professional services in Internet content planning and server hosting. For more information about DNP, please visit www.dnp.co.jp.
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