Last December, FUJIFILM announced that it was acquiring Hitachi’s diagnostic imaging-related business The purchase price is expected to be approximately $ 1.66 billion.
By applying its proprietary image processing and AI technologies to Hitachi’s extensive product lineup, Fujifilm hopes to further expand its medical systems business and to create new values and improve the quality of medical care.
Since its launch of an X-ray system in 1953, Hitachi has been providing solutions using diagnostics imaging system, IT and electronic health records to enhance the quality of care and efficiency. Its diagnostic imaging systems business has a strong global presence, providing a comprehensive suite of products including CT, MRI, X-ray, and ultrasound systems. The business not only serves as a stable revenue base, but also shows potential for further growth. Especially with its ultrasound systems, Hitachi is one of the global leaders offering a wide range of products with high image quality and excellent operability.
Fujifilm has been actively investing its management resources in the business to become a comprehensive healthcare company, Its medical systems business is leading the company’s overall healthcare business, offering a wide variety of medical diagnostic products and services with medical IT at its core, ranging from X-ray, endoscopy, ultrasound to in-vitro diagnostics system..
Fujifilm identified several synergies coming out f the acquistion :
1. Providing one-stop total solutions through comprehensive product line-up. By acquiring Hitachi’s Diagnostic Imaging Systems business, Fujifilm will be able to provide a one-stop total solution that includes CT, MRI diagnostics imaging, medical IT, in vitro diagnostics and endoscopy. This will dramatically enhance its capability to offer a comprehensive solution to medical institutions.
2. Providing innovative solutions by leveraging Fujifilm’s proprietary image processing and AI technologies. By leveraging Fujifilm’s unique image processing technologies utilized in picture archiving communication systems (PACS) and AI technologies, Fujifilm will be able to provide new value-added solutions. For example, the use of AI technology on CT images can reduce noise and offer better image quality in low-dose examinations. In addition, through its extensive portfolio, Fujifilm will be able to enhance its relationships with medical institutions and medical specialists, and access to high quality diagnostic images and operation data. By leveraging such data, Fujifilm will be able to expand into new areas, including “AI-supported Diagnosis” and “AI-supported Maintenance”.
3. Expanding sales capability through cross-selling
Fujifilm will further expand the business in the global market through cross-selling, utilizing the extensive sales channels of both companies. Fujifilm will continue to develop and provide a wide range of products and services that can meet the needs in clinical settings, contributing to even more efficient medical diagnosis and high quality medical care, leading to the maintenance and improvement of people’s health.
According to U.K. market researcher Evaluate, the top three medical imaging companies Siemens, Philips and GE Healthcare hold a combined 65% share of the global market. In 2016, Fujifilm offered to buy Toshiba Medical Systems, but was beaten out by Japanese rival Canon, which won the exclusive right to negotiate a buyout and successfully completed the acquisition.
As of last year, Fujifilm held a 5.5% share of the worldwide diagnostic imaging market. The purchase of Hitachi’s diagnostic imaging operations, which are believed to account for another 2.9% of the market, will bring Fujifilm close to Canon’s 9.5% share.