By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Olympus will be the first Japanese digital camera company to build a digital camera factory in Vietnam, according to a report in Nikkei.
The move is meant to shift the concentration of camera production out of China, the publication said, and to take advantage of Vietnam's lower labor costs. The factory is expected to be completed by 2009 and will initially be dedicated to compact cameras; it will eventually expand into SLR models as well, Nikkei reported.
Once complete, Olympus will consolidate its two Chinese factories into a single building at a total cost of roughly $88 million.
The camera company has seen strong growth in digital camera sales. Olympus net profit jumped 70 percent in the first half, ended September, the company reported late last month.
Olympus posted a group net profit of approximately $278 million in the first half on sales of roughly $4.8 billion. Sales were up 14 percent from the year-ago half.
Sales from digital cameras were also up for the first half, climbing 23.7 percent to $1.3 billion vs. the same period a year ago.
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