News Releases

Promoting Development of New Business through Open Innovation
– Konica Minolta to Exhibit New Services for Reference at Pioneers Asia –

Tokyo (March 22, 2016) - Konica Minolta, Inc. (Konica Minolta) will showcase, as reference, new services it has been developing at its Business Innovation Center (BIC) Japan as part of its open innovation efforts, at Pioneers Asia 2016, a networking event for startups from around the world to be held at Happo-en in Tokyo on March 23, 2016. Through this exhibition, Konica Minolta aims to enhance its presence in the startup industry and accelerate its open innovation efforts to create new business.

Outline of Exhibits

1) HANA (High Accuracy Nose Assist), Japan’s first* standard platform that enables smells “visualization”

(i) Background to the development and value created by the innovation

There is no unit to quantify smells and thus perception of smells differs from person to person, which has given rise to a number of problems in the daily lives. Konica Minolta believes that it can offer entirely new value to society by developing a system that imitates the human olfactory sensory system thereby creating objective criteria to evaluate smells, or in other words, “visualizing” smells.

(ii) Service to be offered

Konica Minolta is developing HANA (High Accuracy Nose Assist), a standard platform that enables visualization of various smells as part of its open innovation efforts through industry-academia collaboration, hoping to find solutions to smells-related problems by using this platform combined with its ICT services.
As a first for this service, Konica Minolta is currently in the process of developing a pocket-sized device to measure body smells for general consumers, together with application software for a smartphone to check the results of the measurement. Konica Minolta hopes that this innovation will free many people from worries about their body smells and make their lives more pleasant.

How the service can work for general users

2) MIMI (Multi-language Information service for Medical Institutions) that assists medical professionals when communicating with foreign patients

(i) Background to the development and value created by the innovation

In recent years, the number of foreigners visiting Japan for leisure and/or business has rapidly increased, and this trend is likely to be accelerated when Tokyo hosts the Olympic Games in 2020.
Accordingly, Japanese medical institutions are under pressure to hire staff or introduce a system to communicate in English and other languages with foreigners who fall ill or are injured while visiting Japan.
Against this background, Konica Minolta is developing a support system to help medical professionals treat foreign patients without being impeded by language barriers and allow foreigners to receive medical in Japan more easily.

(ii) Service to be offered

Working in collaboration with a medical think tank and a venture startup, Konica Minolta will offer multi-language service to support foreign patients through the entire process of medical treatment from visiting a hospital to being discharged from hospital, by use of ICT and smart devices such as tablet-type devices. The service will reduce the burden of medical professionals and enable foreigners of different nationalities to receive uniform medical care.

MIMI (Multi-language Information service for Medical Institutions)

Through its open innovation efforts, Konica Minolta hopes to offer high value-added solutions and services from customers’ perspectives, thereby increasing customer satisfaction and contributing to the betterment of society.

*Based on Konica Minolta’s research as of February 2016

*The devices and services shown in this press release are still in the prototype stage, and may not truly reflect the finished products.

About Konica Minolta Business Innovation Center (BIC)

Business Innovation Centers (BICs) have been established in 5 major regions around the world as the core engine of growth for Konica Minolta. The BIC’s mission is to gain a deeper understanding of its customers’ needs, to advance services, and to create new operations that are useful to both business and people’s lives. The BICs are closely collaborating with a diverse range of entities such as academic institutes, research institutes, start-up companies, and investors. As a result, they will not only deliver new value to the world, but also create and implement new and innovative ideas so as to contribute to a better society.

Konica Minolta’s Initiative

“Pioneers Festival” is held once every year at Vienna, Austria, and is the largest “entrepreneurship, innovation, and future technologies” event in Europe. As a Global Partner (currently known as a Pioneers Challenge Partner) Konica Minolta has been sponsoring since 2011. The event serves as a place to assemble start-ups from both in and outside Europe. Konica Minolta’s aim is to use this event to work collaboratively with new future-oriented technology and business start-ups to create new opportunities. This is the first time that Pioneers Asia will be held in Tokyo. Along with supporting this event, Konica Minolta is aiming to discover possible opportunities to work with start-ups so as to both drive innovation and create value for its customers. Through its Open Innovation initiatives, and also by adopting the viewpoint of its customers to offer services and solutions that provide increased value, Konica Minolta is working to both assure customer satisfaction and contribute to the realization of a better society.

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