Tsuga also said many of the businesses he highlighted in
his CES keynote speech – automotive, avionics, white goods, personal
healthcare products – still have the potential to
generate profits. As for TVs, he said it is no longer a "standalone" business. Instead, Tsuga calls
TV an "infrastructure-based product" because content, broadcast and
services must merge to make TV work. In contrast, home
appliances are "standalone" products that Panasonic can
exploit to generate profit.
TV isn’t a business Panasonic is
willing to walk away from any time soon. Tsuga said customers expect it to provide state-of-the-art TVs, adding that TV is a platform, not a standalone product. TV manufacturing allows Panasonic to develop new solutions and services, he added.
There is one market Panasonic is exiting: mobile phones. It plans to slash much of its mobile
business in Europe and Japan after struggling to make any headway in the
global smartphone market. Referring to diverging standards in the emerging LTE market, Tsuga added, “That’s too much for us. The margin for mobile handsets is
Tsuga answered every question with striking
candor, and his keynote presentation was both smooth and
effective. It remains to be seen whether Tsuga’s obvious competence and
sincerity will enough to turn around struggling Panasonic..
Panasonic chief Kazuhiro Tsuga on stage at CES 2013 keynote.
Green is good for your body and our planet...but rarely good for business...unless government provides financial incentives...where I live (Vancouver, BC) most people think we are the green city, but the hard truth is most jobs are related to dirty resources we dig out and transport (we also cut lots of trees which is kind of green in reverse)...so the moral of the story for Panasonic is that if the government pays for it the green strategy is a sound one
Panasonic could learn a lesson on usability from Apple. My home (wired) phone is from Panasonic; I have lost the instruction manual after less than a year and I cannot figure out how to add a number to the phonebook - it is reminescent of mobile phones in the days before the iPhone.
Actually, I agree with Tsuga. If I understand what he's saying, he wants Panasonic to market its various products as eco-friendly. It's a valid marketing strategy.
Say a car company is developing a new model. They will look around for air conditioning vendors. If Panasonic markets auto A/C systems as "green products," designed for greater efficiency than previous ones, that might be enough for the auto company to choose Panasonic.
The trick is to keep manufacturing costs in check while still being able to legitimately make "green" claims. I don't think this is impossible. We see this in new products every day.
No doubt. However, that doesn't take away from the claims being a marketing strategy.
Much like claims of "organic food." (The only inorganic food people can ingest in quantity is salt, but why quibble.)
I really don't think the majority of the consumer population cares whether their TV is green or not. (I define care as willing to pay 10% more). Call me a cynic. But when the law mandates, the manufacturers must follow.
I think this is a valid strategy in a company as diverse as Panasonic. Tsuga is making lemonade out of lemons. Air conditioners are now a commodity item. Taking their experience and applying it the EVs makes sense as there is still profit in that and even standard cars would want to integrate an air conditioning system that used less energy and thus improves gas mileage.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.