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SkySong’s growing appeal attracts Canon U.S.A.


August 22, 2007

Developers of SkySong, the ASU Scottsdale Innovation Center, announced that Canon U.S.A. Inc., will join other forward-thinking companies at the 37-acre, mixed-use center at the southeast corner of Scottsdale and McDowell roads under development as a hub for technological innovations and a portal for expanding global trade.

Canon will lease 9,000 square feet in the first building, scheduled to open this fall, to take advantage of the ASU resources available to SkySong tenants. Canon will have a demonstration and showroom area on the ground floor and office space on the fourth floor.

“Canon is a well-established, global digital technology company and a leader in innovation,” says Steve Duncan, senior vice president, Higgins Development Partners. “Canon’s decision to locate at SkySong provides further evidence of the project’s benefits to global technology-based enterprises that understand the significant value of having daily access to a university such as ASU. ASU is one of SkySong’s differentiating factors that will subsequently also bring the knowledge workers who are key to the long-term growth of Scottsdale’s and the Valley’s economies.”

Last fall Canon established an alliance with ASU to build a world-class “Sustainable Digital University.” As part of that initiative, Canon is working with ASU to identify cooperative research projects and to explore and evaluate new technologies.

“Canon is guided by the philosophy of Kyosei – ‘all people harmoniously living and working together into the future,’ ” says Ryoichi Bamba, executive vice president and general manager, Canon U.S.A. Inc. “Canon, Arizona State University and the SkySong developers have a common vision for the future of technology in our everyday lives, and share a commitment to sustainability. We expect the SkySong facilities to foster innovative thinking and technology developments for both Canon and its partners.”

According to Rob Melnick, ASU’s associate vice president for Economic Affairs, “Canon has held a ‘top five’ position in global rankings for patents issued for more than 20 years – it is easy to see that their excellent reputation for innovation and invention activity coupled with their commitment to sustainability – ‘maximum value with minimum resources’ as they say, are why Canon is a superb fit for SkySong. This is exactly the type of global giant that should be mingling with the cutting-edge companies and entrepreneurs at SkySong. The ASU-Canon relationship was one that was quickly forged due to the entrepreneurial direction and values that both organizations embrace.”

Established more than 70 years ago, Canon is a global leader in professional business and consumer imaging equipment, information systems and other special industrial products. Canon continues to build on its inventive and innovative strengths, which have led them to creative applications in environmental technologies and the implementation of strong corporate protocols based on sustainable principles.

ASU will be one of the key tenants of SkySong’s first phase, occupying about 80,000 square feet of the 157,000-square-foot, four-story building about to be completed. Several premier ASU programs that facilitate the transfer of technology developed at ASU into the marketplace and develop new entrepreneurial talent from within the University and business community will be located at SkySong.

In addition, the university will have interdisciplinary research programs in engineering-related fields. SkySong will become a focal point for the intensification and expansion of programs in these fields and the development of new research in this area.

The developers have commenced construction of the second commercial building, an identical structure directly across the boulevard from the first, and anticipate initial occupancy in the second quarter of 2008. Development of the initial residential phase and the parking structure in the southeast corner of the project also is advancing. The accelerated development schedule is ahead of the build-out terms committed to when leasing the land from Scottsdale to become a catalyst for the area’s revitalization and redevelopment.

Longer-term plans for all phases of SkySong construction over the next 10 years call for the project to comprise about 1.2 million square feet of commercial office, retail and research space in addition to residential units. Designed for innovative companies whose global business success is enhanced by a facilitated collaboration with ASU’s human and technological assets, the completed project will be a vigorous, 21st century center for innovation, commercialization, entrepreneurship and business development.

Canon joins a growing list of global companies locating at SkySong including Qwest Communications Inc., a leading provider of high-speed Internet, digital television, digital voice and wireless services; and Finao Capital, a venture capital firm that focuses on early stage technology companies.

This spring, ASU announced that two innovative, entrepreneurial companies from Mexico would establish U.S. operations at SkySong: Ensitech, a software development firm offering on-demand solutions for eBusiness, and Energy Ventures, a provider of performance management services for companies committed to electric power production.

Other international tenants include Aurigin Technology Pte. Ltd., a Singaporean technology business that develops innovative products for the optoelectronics, photonics, microelectromechanical and biomedical industries and produces components found in consumer electronics such as computers, digital cameras and portable music players; Litree Co., a Chinese firm specializing in water purification technology, and another Chinese firm, Fscreen Sci-tech Co. Ltd., developer of solar-energy technology, and Sebit, an e-learning company from Turkey.