Nikon, Buffalo Tech Update Japan Production Status

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New York - Nikon reports that one employee died and three are still missing due to the Japan earthquake and that some of its affiliated plants in the region have begun or will begin production soon.

Buffalo Technology said it did not suffer any major damage to its business from the March 11 earthquake although it has a sales office in Sendai.

The camera company said the employee was with the Sendai Nikon Corporation. Safety of three employees is not yet confirmed in the area of Natori City, Miyagi prefecture.

In terms of manufacturing plants and facilities, one of Nikon's plans and seven of its manufacturing subsidiaries are located in Miyagi prefecture, Tochigi Prefecture and Ibaraki Prefecture in the earthquake and tsunami region and operations have been  suspended at all of those facilities.

At Tochigi Nikon Corporation, operation has started from Friday, March 18. At Sendai Nikon Corporation and Miyagi Nikon Precision Co., both of which have been severely damaged, operation is expected to resume by the end of this March. Operation at the remaining facilities will start tomorrow on March 23.

In the prepared statement Nikon said, "Even after operation resumes, we have a concern that the situation may happen where our production cannot fully satisfy our customers' requirement due to inability of full swing production caused by problems such as the planned blackouts of electricity and procurement of components from our business partners. While we will do our utmost effort to overcome such expected difficulties, we will be most grateful if our customers could understand such circumstances.

The company added, "We assure to extend our best support for restoration of the facilities hit by the disaster to our customers of Precision Equipment and Instruments business, and repair/servicing to our customers of Imaging business suffering from the disaster."

Buffalo Technology said it did not suffer any major damage to its business from the March 11 earthquake even though it has a sales office in Sendai.

The company is headquartered in Nagoya, Japan, which is about 400 miles south of the impacted zone. Its sales and engineering offices in Tokyo did receive some damage, and the company also has a sales office in Sendai, directly in the worst affected area, said Brian Verenkoff, Buffalo's business development director, but he did not have any direct news regarding its status.

The company's biggest problem is getting finished product shipped out of the country, he said, adding it had enough components on hand that supply should not be an issue until late April.

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