EPSON needs no introduction. A pioneer in the printing, information and imaging related equipment business, EPSON has consistently moved forward in providing a cleaner and cost-efficient way for consumers to express themselves via printing. LIVING met up with R.V. Ram Prasad, Director of Sales and Marketing, EPSON India and in the interview discussed the challenges and the scope of EPSON in Nepal.
With over 30+ years in the marketing field, Ram Prasad graduated from Madras University in Chemistry but started working as a door to door salesman in the early days of his career. From there he worked for various companies like BPL, Eureka Forbes, GBC Modicorp etc. “I worked for various companies in different capacities. I have been in the sales and marketing business for a long time. I only talk numbers,” he says laughing. “But it has been a good journey so far and I oversee all the products EPSON sells in India, Sri-Lanka, Bangladesh as well as in Nepal,” he adds.
Ram Prasad shares how EPSON changed the printing business by introducing various new technologies that make printing cost-effective, easy and fun. “The first generation was the dot-matrix printer, then came the ink-jet printer due to the WWW boom, then came the ink-cartridge printers and now we have something called the ink-tank printer. EPSON is constantly changing the printing industry according to market needs,” he explains. He delves on how people want to continue printing despite the world being increasingly digital so long as it remains cost-effective. “Not only cost-effective, people are increasingly becoming more and more environmentally conscious. We as a company need to accommodate that into our products as well,” he says. UNDP has 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) and EPSON has incorporated 13 of those goals. They are currently working to incorporate all 17 SDG’s to a more sustainable product. “Our consumers should be happy and proud that they are using EPSON products. Minimal waste, minimal carbon output and print all they want. In the near future we are also launching a product that absorbs ink from used paper and discharges clear paper,” he informs excitingly.
There are still many problems that exist that makes it hard for a company like EPSON to market. Even though there are challenges there is still huge potential in the market. “Nepal currently has over 30,000 educational institutes spread throughout the country and we want to tap into that. The educational system needs to be better. Another problem I see is that there is no access to proper market data. I have been here for a couple of days and I want to see data and hard facts but sadly there are none or very little data available to me. It is difficult to market when you do not have proper data,” laments Prasad.
Talking about potential markets in Nepal, he reveals that many tourist spots can have instant on-demand printing facilities that use EPSON printers that can print pictures on t-shirts and such. He also shares how their projectors can be used for recreational and educational purposes and how EPSON makes such products. “As I mentioned earlier, customers should be proud to use our products, we have products that align consumer interests, be it printing or visualization. We want them to print more. For the office we have printers that can print as many as 100 pages per minute with ink-tank technology available. So you can print all you want at half the cost,” he says. The printing business will not dwindle down just because of the onset of the digital economy. With innovative and environmentally conscious companies such as EPSON who bring out products that are well thought out and designed, the businesses will have more customers if not the same. Companies such as EPSON will lead the way into a much cleaner and safer printing market that is beneficial to not only the customers but also to the world.