Lexmark completes sale of inkjet unit

Printer vendor marks exit from inkjet market with $100 million patent sale.

Goodbye

Lexmark has completed its exit from the inkjet market after selling its related technology and assets to Japanese consumer electronics firm Funai for $100 million.

The printer vendor has sold off more than 1,500 patents spanning the firm's inkjet, output and imaging technologies as well as its manufacturing facility in the Philippines.

Funai is a long-time OEM partner of Lexmark's, as it has manufactured inkjet hardware for the vendor since 1997.

As part of the deal, Funai will now be able to produce inkjet hardware and supplies under its own branding.

Paul Rooke, Lexmark chairman and chief executive, said the deal marks the end of his firm's time in the inkjet market.

"We will continue to support our existing customer base with the sale of inkjet supplies," Rooke added.

In a statement, Funai said there would be no disruption in service or support as a result of the deal, as existing customers will continue to work directly with Lexmark.

Tomonori Hayashi, president and chief executive of Lexmark, said the acquisition will allow the firm to build out its portfolio of business technology products.

"Funai and Lexmark have developed a great partnership and we are glad to take over Lexmark's inkjet-related technology and assets," said Hayashi.

"Funai will benefit from the strong inkjet business platform that Lexmark has established," he added.

The transaction is expected to close during the first half of 2013.

Lexmark announced its inkjet market exit strategy last August, claiming the move would save the firm around $95 million a year from 2015.

At the time, it also confirmed that around 1,700 jobs at the firm would be lost as a result.

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