Hoya has hinted at plans to cut digital camera production costs as part of restructuring needed after completion of its bid for Pentax – a process which formally begins today.

In a statement spelling out the challenges it faces Hoya said: ?Significant structural changes have occurred in optical equipment and related materials since the emergence of digital cameras. Competitors in Asia have grown rapidly and are expected to continue gaining market share through low price campaigns and increasing the added value of their products.?

The statement added: ?Along with existing optical manufacturers, home appliance makers have also entered the digital camera market, further intensifying competition in this area. In order to maintain growth in this environment, it is necessary to distinguish from competitors by reinforcing cost competitiveness by lowering production costs and by increasing added value focusing on technologies.?

Hoya admits that a ?qualitative transformation? of its business structure would be necessary to achieve this.

The statement, dated 2 July, continued: ?In optical equipment and related materials we believe that, if the Target?s [Pentax?s] optical design and processing technologies and the Tender Offerer?s [Hoya?s] optical material development and precision processing technologies and mass production capability of optical lenses are vertically integrated, we could become the only optical manufacturer in the global market having [sic] the ability of creating new optical module system products.?

Hoya is today expected to start its tender offer for more than 50% of Pentax shares in a deal worth up to 105 billion yen which will make Pentax a wholly-owned subsidiary.