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Tokyo (January 19, 2006) --- Since July 2005, Sony Corporation (Sony) and Konica Minolta Photo Imaging, Inc. (Konica Minolta PI) have been working on the joint development of digital single lens reflex (SLR) cameras. Sony, Konica Minolta Holdings, Inc. and Konica Minolta PI are pleased to announce that they have decided to transfer a certain portion of Konica Minolta PI's assets related to digital SLR cameras to Sony, and at the same time, that Konica Minolta PI will consign its customer service operation for Konica Minolta cameras and related products* to Sony. Agreement to this effect was reached today.
Under this agreement, on March 31 2006, Sony will receive certain assets from Konica Minolta PI that are necessary for the development, design, production and so forth of digital SLR cameras compatible with Konica Minolta PI's “Maxxum/Dynax lens mount system”.** Sony will accelerate development of new digital SLR cameras based on and compatible with the Maxxum/Dynax lens mount system with a view to marketing these models this summer.
On the basis of its ongoing “selection and concentration”, Konica Minolta Group will concentrate on its core “business technologies” field and its strategic “optics and display devices” field and withdraw from camera business*** as of March 31, 2006. At the same time, Konica Minolta PI will partially transfer certain assets related to digital SLR cameras to Sony.
From April 1 2006, Konica Minolta PI will consign the customer service operations for Konica Minolta cameras and related products* to Sony, and Sony will implement service operations from that date onward.