FREMONT — Canon Inc. of Japan has agreed to invest $100 million in Next Inc., the brainchild of computer pioneer Steven Jobs, to acquire one-sixth of the privately held 4-year-old company.
The agreement gives Next a hefty financial boost just as it gets set to begin volume shipments of its sleek, black computer workstations.
"We hope this will erase anybody's worries about Next's long-term financial stability, its ability to invest in (research and development) and in manufacturing," Jobs told a group of reporters and industry analysts before a tour of the company's automated factory in Fremont.
The terms of Canon's agreement are essentially the same as those negotiated with H. Ross Perot when he invested $20 million in the company in 1987. Canon will receive a seat on the board of directors of the company and has agreed not to acquire more than 20% of the firm for at least 10 years.