Hitachi’s first product supply contract in the overseas market for scientific instruments came in 1978 when an agreement was reached with Boehringer Mannheim (now Roche Diagnostics) of West Germany, one of the world’s leading producers of laboratory reagents, regarding the sale of automated blood analyzers.
This deal allowed innovative products developed at the Naka Works of Hitachi, Ltd. (now the Naka Manufacturing Division of Hitachi High-Technologies) to be sold along with appropriate reagents as a package deal, and thanks to the international sales network of Boehringer Mannheim it opened up a truly global market.
Then, in 1980, the new model 705 automated blood analyzer came onto the market, following the above-mentioned agreement. This product can be said to had laid the technological foundation for the automatic analyzers now in use. In total, 3,500 units were produced, of which some 70% were exported. The agreement with Boehringer Mannheim was an auspicious beginning, an important first step toward the international business expansion of Hitachi High-Technologies today.