Halloween Financial Horrors: Canon, Nikon, Sony, Taiwan
Halloween night is as good of a night as any for some financial horror stories. A number of camera market signals have come out the last few days pointing out financial issues.
DigiTimes Research reveals that shipments out of Taiwan are down down both for the quarter and the year so far. Nearly 50% fewer shipments so far this year. The four Taiwanese companies will ship around 4 million cameras this quarter (Q4 of 2013). Their 2013 estimate is about 20 million cameras. Nikon is their biggest customer by far, followed by Canon, Casio and Sony which combined have about half of the total shipments. Judging by the sensor sizes mentioned in the report, it looks like most of these are P&S cameras?
Nikon issued a statement (PDF file) to lower their revenue forecast by 7 billion yen. The main culprit are lower prices of entry level DSLRs. It also includes a rather dramatic line, "the sales volume of the Digital camera—Interchangeable
Lens Type and Interchangeable lens will be dragged down due to weak market conditions". (via Engadget)
But as Engadget points out above, Nikon was not as bad as the Canon operating profit outlook, revised downwards, saying that sales of high end cameras (in this context they mean DSLRs and iLCs) will be down year-over-year in unit volume for the first time since 2003. A drop from 8.2 million to 8 million, but it's the trend that is more bothersome than a mere 200,000 DSLRs/iLCs.
Grumpy Photographer Opines: you know, Mr. Canon, if your last three Digital Rebel DSLRs were not nearly identical, and if your first mirrorless camera was a bit less half-assed than a 85-lb supermodel on a celery and distilled water diet, maybe more people would have bought more of your cameras.
Sony may have generated a lot of excitement the last few months with their full frame mirrorless and faux-SLR entry-level mirrorless and their RX-series and the smartphone sensor-lens modules but the financial impact of these new models will play out in the future. For now, it is down down down for Sony too, camera sales were down nearly 7% (via Engadget).