Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2005/02/26

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Subject: [Leica] Re:PMA and Leica
From: drodgers7798 at (David Rodgers)
Date: Sat Feb 26 09:07:29 2005
References: <>

Bob Haight wrote:

>I think the mood of the entire industry is somber. No
>one knows where it is going or how they will fit in.
>Margins continue to shrink as do former glories for

Productivity is key today more than ever. There's a lot of pressure 
lower costs by increasing productivity. Costs for raw materials, labor 
(wage and fringe benefits) and overhead (such as energy) are way up. 
Meanwhile there's pressure to keep selling prices down. (Don't blame 
Walmart. Blame consumers :-) ).

Companies in the photo industry aren't the only ones feeling the 
pressure. Serveral large established grocers in the US are in the 
process of declaring bankruptcy, causing a huge ripple effect among all 
of their suppliers.

I'm sure it's tremendously difficult for companies like Lieca, to 
adjust. In the past they could affort long development cycles because 
they had long production cycles.Today things are being compressed, 
exponentially. R&D is expensive and if a company misreads the market it 
can be fatal. 

Digital workflow makes a commercial photographer more productive, and 
therefore more competitive. It doesn't give them a better eye. Or in 
that respect make them better asthetically.  Documentary photography 
isn't any more powerful today than it was 30 years ago. I haven't heard 
the term "Master Photographer" used as much.

People lament Nikon for not coming out with new products as quickly as 
say Canon. Yet in the time the D100 has been out Canon has gone from the 
D60, to D10 to D20. Whether any of those is functionally better than the 
D100 is debatable. Any time I hear someone complain about Nikon's lack 
of a new body,  I'm thankful I don't have another big upgrade 
whispering, "buy me!"

The amateur market is just as important as the commercial market. The 
D70 was a home run and Nikon currently has over 50 percent of the DSLR 
market and is doing quite well financially. IMHO Nikon is adjusting 
well.  Canon, too, but they enjoy certain R&D advantages. The jury is 
still out on a lot of companies. It's gotta be difficult.



In reply to: Message from rhaightjr at (Bob Haight) ([Leica] Re:PMA and Leica)