Panasonic goes green

That "green" is the buzzword for all kinds of companies and organisations is not surprising but that a conglomerate like Panasonic is going all-out in terms of making their products more environmentally friendly is not so common still. PCWorld Middle East spoke with Anthony Peter, Associate Director, Direct Communications & Customer Care (DCCC) Group, Panasonic Marketing Middle East FZE about what green means for Panasonic.

Panasonic's appearance at Gitex Technology Week in Dubai, starting October 17, is again considerable and their expectation is, according to Peter, to establish a brand presence as a global electronics brand leader. They want to be known as "a company, which takes initiatives in eco products," he explained. This is based in Panasonic's corporate vision, which says that in 2018, the year the company turns 100, it wants to be the global number one electronics company in terms of green products.

This would be quite a feat for any company but for a conglomerate like Panasonic, which has their hand in such a wide range of products, the difficulty increases exponentially. Peter said that as a guide the company has classified products in terms of the eco-friendliness in Basic, Superior and Super. This is its guiding principle going forward and it works on getting products on a higher level on the scale.

Right now all Panasonic products satisfy the company's criteria for Basic and many items have already been upgraded to Superior. The criteria for that, which again is an internal Panasonic measurement, is that the product should be a "benchmark for the industry," Peter explained. To take another step up to Super, the product should be an "industry top-class performer" in terms of power consumption, materials uses, production techniques, CO2 emissions, etc. Products on the highest level on Panasonic's eco scale are, Peter said, "products that have made significant progress in environmental performances and set trends towards sustainable society." Right now Panasonic has no products on Super level and Peter did not want to announce any timeline.

What consumers may not welcome is that Panasonic clearly says that greener products will come at a premium price. "We're trying to keep the same price structure
lance and watch market trends. 
viously there will be a little bit of premium 
t consumers benefit in the long run," said Peter.

Panasonic's progress to more eco friendly products is very much driven by customer demand, according to Peter. "More customers are walking into showrooms asking for eco friendly products," Peter said. Panasonic sees a "subtle awareness" in the market, an awareness they're clearly hoping will translate into increased sales.

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