Nikon boosts DSLR production, mulls film exit strategy|
(Wednesday, June 16, 2004 - 05:12 EDT)
An interesting article from Reuters based on an interview with Nikon Corp. managing director Makoto Kimura describes the company's plans for digital SLR and compact film cameras.
According to Reuters' Nathan Layne and Kunihiko Kichise, Nikon is increasing production of its popular D70 digital SLR from an initial 70,000 units monthly to a whopping 90,000 (almost a 30% increase). Kimura-san tells Reuters that he expects a further increase that would take this to as much as 95,000 - 100,000 units monthly by next year, depending on the products unveiled by Olympus, Konica and Pentax in the interim. A particular interesting note in the item is that Nikon expects its digital SLR sales in the year to March 2005 to reach one million units, more than triple its figures for March 2003 - 2004. In the same period, it expects total digital camera sales to climb 44% to 7.8 million units.
Alongside the dramatic upsurge in digital sales, though, Nikon has seen compact film camera sales drop off a precipice from the peak of 1.9 million units annually in 1994, to a projected 50,000 units worldwide in the current business year. Kimura-san says the company has no plans to stop producing film SLRs, but may drop its compact film camera lineup from next year, noting that "[there] really is no region in the world where you can do good business in compact film cameras anymore".