— Heading for Atlanta to
attend 2010 CEDIA Expo, Toshiba’s Scott
Ramirez shared with TWICE an update on
his company’s restructuring and move into the
Toshiba America Information Systems (TAIS)
unit here, and shared details on the plans to
market its first 3D TVs this fall.
Ramirez, who was among a handful of executives
who have relocated from Wayne, N.J., to
new offices in Irvine, Calif., said that while life inside
Toshiba may be very different from the past,
the core marketing direction, distribution strategy
and plans for both mainstream and higherend
Cinema-series products remains very much
the same, with the exception of Cell TV, which is
also to be transformed from an expensive flagship
technology statement into advanced — yet
more affordable — products for the future.
Last week TWICE interviewed Ramirez from
his Irvine headquarters:
How is the realignment into TAIS
going to affect the way you go to market with
In regard to our dealers, this unification
isn’t going to affect our go-to-market
strategy at all. However, as we move forward,
it is going to enable us to provide superior
products and enhanced dealer support
How would you define Toshiba’s
market strategy for TV and video products today,
and how has that changed from what you
were doing two or three years ago?
A few years ago Toshiba was a
very strong player, and in fact industry leader,
in projection TV and direct-view TV. We
are now clearly a player in flat panel, and are
working on becoming a driving force as digital
convergence finally becomes an industry reality.
As we move forward, our trifecta will be
beautiful design, unbeatable picture quality,
and state-of-the-art convergence that is both
fun and easy.
Internet Protocol TVs and source
devices have started to make strong inroads
into the market. How do you see the new
company structure under TAIS helping in this
We will definitely leverage the
strength of our PC division to create more integrated
products. With a history of strong PC
and TV engineering, Toshiba is in the best possible
position to combine existing engineering
equities and lead in connectivity. Our goal is
not to add technology for technology sake, but
to add usable functionality that improves our
consumer’s lives. Exactly how that comes to
fruition, you will see at CES and beyond.
Where do independent and CEDIA
channel dealers fit into that plan?
Independents and installers remain
very important to Toshiba. These are the
people that can clearly explain the benefits of
new technology, and create a complete, compelling
customer experience. That adds true
Toshiba’s Ramirez Ready For Next Phase
value, and these relationships will grow to be even more
important as we move forward.
And mass merchants and warehouse clubs?
We are not changing our current distribution
plans for 2010.
TWICE: At CES, you announced plans to market later
this year Toshiba’s Cell TV, bringing 3D and other advanced
capabilities to the line. What are your plans for
that product now?
Ramirez: Toshiba is committed to bringing 3D and other
advanced technologies to market, but the actual product
plan is being adjusted. As you may have read, Toshiba
announced CEVO at IFA. CEVO stands for Cell Evolution,
and is a method of bringing Cell functionality to consumers
at more competitive retails. I can’t elaborate now, but you
will see more from us in 2011.
What is your new 3DTV strategy is for 2010
and beyond? What will Toshiba be unveiling at the CEDIA
Expo this week?
We are now announcing our new WX800
Cinema series. In addition to incredible cosmetic design
and full Internet connectivity, these models include our
enhanced 3D with 3D Resolution+ to virtually eliminate
cross-talk and increase 3D sharpness. As we move into
2011, you will see a strong expansion of the use of 3D.
Our offering will include unique Toshiba 3D enhancement
technologies. In fact, you may have seen some announcements
on our No Glasses 3D technology, which is one
What is your strategy for 3D Blu-ray?
We are also now announcing the BDX3000
3D Blu-ray player. It is the perfect companion to the
WX800 Cinema series. In the next few months you will
see promotions that tie together the WX800, BDX3000
and Toshiba active 3D glasses.
A 25-year CE industry executive, Scott
Ramirez was named television and digital home entertainment
marketing and product management VP
following the merger of the former Toshiba America
Consumer Products into Toshiba America Information
Systems this summer.
Ramirez joined Toshiba as product management director
and then moved on to become Toshiba’s marketing
director. As marketing VP, his responsibilities include
product P&L management with such tasks as market
analysis, product planning and positioning, PSI control,
pricing and promotions.
He is an active member of the Consumer Electronics
Association (CEA), having served on several industry
committees, and for the past four years he has been a
CEA video board member.
Ramirez has also held management positions with Panasonic
He has an economics degree from Rutgers