NEC Australia Thursday announced it will withdraw from the local consumer electronics market to focus on business services in a move that will result in 200 redundancies.
The decision falls on the fortieth anniversary of opening of NEC Australia in 1969 with just five employees.
As a result of the "strategic restructure" of its business NEC will close its retail arm from March 1, 2009 and stop selling whitegoods, consumer appliances, home entertainment equipment and consumer LCD and Plasma TVs.
Commercial displays, including digital signage and business projectors, will continue to be sold through the company's display solutions division.
The restructure will result in some 200 staff leaving the business by the end of March through a combination of voluntary and compulsory redundancies, with most from the retail division, according to NEC.
NEC Australia managing director Wataru Takeuchi said the move forms part of a strategic evolution towards redefining NEC Australia as a business services company.
"As such, a decision has been made to withdraw our retail products in order to focus our resources and energy on our key strengths which are our business offerings and our research and development capabilities," He said.
NEC will focus solely on its core ICT and network communication solutions and services with a greater emphasis on delivering service and consultancy to its customers.
"The move comes in response to rapidly changing market conditions in retail, the weakening Australian dollar, and is in line with a focus of its resources and energies on the business and government markets," according the NEC.
The company will continue to offer support to existing customers by honouring its warranty and extended support agreements.