Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2000/06/12

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Subject: RE: [Leica] 35-70/2.8 out of production ???
From: Larry Kopitnik <>
Date: Mon, 12 Jun 2000 08:53:37 -0500

Leica designs and produces, to standards which only Leica can, a zoom in
what is probably the most useful popular focal length and f stop...a real
competitor for the similar Canon and Nikon lenses; am I right so far? And
they only plan from the beginning on manufacturing a total of 200 or is it
2000 of these, and then discontinuing it? Right? And we wonder why this
company is but microsteps ahead of the Dodo in long-term survival? And we
actually discuss the business/marketing acumen of Hair Cohen?

Let's put this in perspective.

When Leica announced the 35-70, and were planning production for it, 
they were in financial trouble. Reports (unverified) on the LUG were 
that they had as many as 5000 unsold R8s in inventory, and may have 
been selling as few as 2000 a year. The financial reports from that 
time are still on Leica's website, and they do contain references to 
unsold inventory being one of Leica's problems.

Leica knew how the R8 was selling. They knew how lenses in the R line 
were selling. And they knew the last thing they needed was more 
unsold inventory. With all of those considerations in mind, they 
decided how many 35-70 lenses to produce (300 is the number I'm 

Probably the best thing that could happen to Leica is to have 
underestimated the demand and to need to go back and produce more. 
But given that they apparently thought 300 of these lenses was all 
there would be demand for in the world says something about how, at 
least at that time, the R system was selling.


Replies: Reply from "Dan Post" <> (Re: [Leica] 35-70/2.8 out of production ???)