Canon plans to acquire I.R.I.S. Group SA to accelerate solutions and services business growth

Canon intends to acquire all shares, warrants and stock options of I.R.I.S. Group through an all cash public tender offer

London, (PresseBox) - Canon, world-leader in imaging solutions, today announced the intention to launch, via its subsidiary Canon Europa N.V., a voluntary and conditional public takeover bid in cash for all shares, warrants and stock options of I.R.I.S. Group SA. The bid relates to all shares (including treasury shares) issued by I.R.I.S. Group SA, which are not held by Canon Europa N.V. The bid offers a price of EUR 44.50 per share, and the price for warrants and stock options have been determined in conformity with market practices.

Canon already has a close strategic partnership with I.R.I.S. Group, developed over a number of years, which was strengthened in July 2009 when Canon acquired a 17% stake in the company.

Bringing I.R.I.S. Group into the Canon Group will allow both companies to cooperate more closely in developing a range of technology solutions to be able to better serve their customers in the business environment. The bid is part of Canon's plan to further develop its long standing strategy to offer its customers end-to-end office solutions that complement its current world class solutions portfolio and to develop a more consultancy based sales approach.

Rokus van Iperen, President & CEO, Canon Europe, Middle East and Africa, explains: "We are excited about this new phase in our relationship with I.R.I.S. Group and looking forward to bringing such a talented and innovative company into the Canon Group. Canon has identified business solutions and professional services as important focus areas for future growth and we believe this investment will bring long term opportunities to build on our success in the solutions and consultancy businesses to date. We will be working closely with I.R.I.S. Group, as a stand-alone company, to deliver more advanced solutions and services and greater customer value."

Pierre de Muelenaere, CEO, I.R.I.S. Group, comments: "We are very pleased to have reached this important milestone for I.R.I.S. Group, and proud that Canon intends to bring our company within the Canon group. The entire board of I.R.I.S. Group fully supports this bid and we are committed to making this transition a success, which we believe will be to the benefit of our customers and all our stakeholders."

Full details of the bid will be covered in the offer prospectus and the memorandum in reply prepared by the board of I.R.I.S. Group that will be published on the website of I.R.I.S. Group and of ING Belgium following approval thereof by the FSMA, the Belgian financial markets regulator. The prospectus will be also available free of charge by telephone from ING Belgium at+32 2 464.60.02 (French) or +32 2 464 60 04 (English). Reference is also made to the official announcement of the bid made by the FSMA on its website for further details on the bid.

About Canon Europe

Canon Europe is the regional sales and marketing operation for Canon Inc., represented in 116 countries and employing over 11,000 people across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).

Founded in 1937 with the specific goal of making the best quality camera available to customers, Canon's tireless 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. From amateur photographers to professional print companies, Canon enables each customer to realise their own passion for image.

Canon's corporate philosophy is Kyosei - 'living and working together for the common good'. In EMEA, Canon Europe pursues sustainable business growth, focusing on reducing its own environmental impact and supporting customers to reduce theirs using Canon's products, solutions and services. Canon has achieved global certification to ISO 14001, demonstrating a world-class environmental management standard.

Further information about Canon Europe is available at:

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I.R.I.S. Group

The I.R.I.S. mission is to increase our clients' productivity and knowledge by helping them to better manage their documents, data and information.

I.R.I.S. Products & Technologies develops Intelligent Document Recognition technologies and products and markets its portfolio of products worldwide through solid partnerships.

I.R.I.S. Professional Solutions enables companies and government bodies to find in one company the innovative expertise and high-tech solutions to efficiently manage their documents, information flows and IT infrastructures.

In 2011, the I.R.I.S. Group achieved sales of 121.3 million Euros. I.R.I.S. employs over 600 staff, based in Louvain‐la‐Neuve, Vilvoorde and Antwerp (Belgium); Orly (France); Windhof (Luxembourg); Amstelveen and Maastricht (Netherlands); Aachen (Germany); Delray Beach (Florida, USA); Hong Kong (China) and Oslo (Norway).

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