Topics: Innovation, Digital single-lens reflex camera, Strategic management Pages: 6 (1922 words) Published: May 9, 2011
Select a company you believe to be innovative (this should be an internationally known company). Explain what makes this company innovative? In your answer, use relevant theory and examples to illustrate why you believe the company is innovative.

Cannon – an innovative company
Founded in 1937 with the specific goal of making the best quality camera available to customers, Canon’s passion for the power of image has since extended its technology into many other markets and has established it as a world leader in both consumer and business imaging solutions. Its solutions comprise products, ranging from digital compact and SLR cameras, through broadcast lenses and portable X-ray machines, to multi-function and production printers, all supported by a range of value added services. Canon invests heavily in R&D to deliver the richest and most innovative products and services to satisfy customers’ creative needs. In my essay I will show that through disruptive, strategic and product innovation Canon remains the leader in the market of all its products.

Canon has proved that disruptive innovation brings many benefits to businesses. Christensen and Raynor (Christensen and Raynor, 2003) justify that new entrant firms will win with leading firms of an industry through disruptive innovation, by commercializing a simpler, more convenient product that sells for less money and appeals to new or unattractive customer set. Canon has proved that the best way for an upstart company to attack established competitors is to disrupt them. Disruptive innovations do not attempt to bring better products to established customers in existing markets. Rather, they disrupt and redefine that trajectory by introducing products and services that are not as good as currently available products. Still, disruptive technologies offer other benefits – typically, they are simpler, more convenient, and less expensive products that appeal to new or less-demanding customers (Todd and Bessant, 2009). Once the disruptive product gains a share in the new or low-end markets, the improvement cycle begins. In addition, the pace of technological process exceeds customers’ ability to use it; the previously not good enough technology eventually improves to intersect with the needs of the more demanding customers. When that happens, the disruptors are on the path that will ultimately beat the incumbents.

Throughout Canon’s history, the company has used disruptive innovation in order to gain market share. In 1982 Canon developed the first personal copier. It gained its name because the reproduction elements were all contained in a cartridge that users could just replace themselves when they ran out. Canon’s desktop photocopiers were a new-market disruption; in that they enabled people to begin conveniently making their own photocopies, rather than taking their originals to the corporate high-speed photocopy center where a technician had to run the job for them. The high-speed Xerox machine was very complicated, needed servicing frequently and only a technician could operate it. When Canon made photocopying so convenient, people ended up making a lot more copies, therefore through disruption innovation Canon has created new value network.

Additionally, Canon’s innovation sources come from monitoring the market and following and adjusting to its competitors. In 1987 Ricoh revolutionized the photocopier industry with the release of the first digital photocopier. Thus, Canon followed releasing their digital photocopier products, which effectively consisted of an integrated scanner and laser printer. In 2001 Canon released its first two digital personal copiers, the PC1080F and the PC1060. Furthermore, with the disruptive innovation of touch screen technology, the company has decided to launch its own touch screen display in order to compete in the market. The new Digital IXUS 200 IS features Canon’s first ever...
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