Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2005/04/11

[Author Prev] [Author Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Author Index] [Topic Index] [Home] [Search]

Subject: [Leica] Re: LUG Digest, Vol 29, Issue 369, digital M
From: at (Douglas Sharp)
Date: Mon Apr 11 04:09:38 2005
References: <>

These are absolutely astronomical sums, particularly when you think that 
Leica is no longer a supplier of equipment for professional photographers.
To be quite brutal about it,they make professional standard equipment 
for wealthy or discerning amateurs, and have done for years. The number 
of professionals still using Leica can easily be counted on the fingers 
of one hand.
Leica sells charisma and "values" more than anything else.
Arguably, Leica products are possibly (probably) the best manufactured 
and best QC'd photographic equipment on the market and, as such 
eminently desirable. This is where we get to the heart of Leica's 
market, the desirability factor, "Must Have!!" is the motto, Leica is , 
however, well on the way to pricing themselves out of the market.
However good the DMR (WITHOUT a camera!! for between 4 and 5 thousand 
euros!!) or a future Digital-M may (5000 euros minimum, just the body) 
be, there can only be a very limited market right from the start.What 
Leica needs is a basic "bread and butter" product to finance the 
high-end stuff. Nikon ran 2 price ranges, so did Contax (poor example, 
it didn't work for them either, Olympus did as well.).
Whether this should be an entry level camera (a la RE) or a P&S or a 
basic rangefinder, lenses in other mounts, or whatever, this may be the 
only way to get them back on their feet.
cheers froom Germany

BTW, the report from the management in Solms also said, indirectly, that 
they didn't have enough capital to be able to afford to close down.
The employees social "safety net" would be so expensive that they 
couldn't afford to lay people off, a factor which may involve millions 
of euros. Hire-and-fire is definitely not the order of the day in Germany.
This is usually calculated for each employee as : number of years in 
employment x gross monthly salary/wage x 13 (1 year + christmas bonus) x 
some factor worked out between unions/wokers council and management, 
usually between 65 and 75%.

Laurence John wrote:

> I believe that a Leica digital M also has to be "upgradeable" when new 
> technology (pixel no, type etc & internal software) becomes available.  
> Why buy a such an "over-priced" camera that lasts at least 50 years, when 
> digital is so disposable?  It has to be able to have the "guts" removed 
> and replaced - then the outer skin can continue as long as we like the RF 
> format.  I have a Digilux 2 (which I love) and I hope that may be 
> upgradable too.
> If a digital M comes out for $4k, I'll be over to the US like a shot 
> (cluching my M6 to trade in).  My local UK dealer reckons on over ?3k - 
> work that out to $ !!!!!!!!!  
> My UK dealer (35 years Leica dealer) also reckons they won't go down - 
> German law dictated they had to make the "loss" (costs for Japan subsid, 
> DMR & digital M) known to the press, and that caused the fuss.  They 
> reckon they've weathered worse in the past and that the the digital M will 
> be out in '06.
> Laurence John

In reply to: Message from laurencejjohn at (Laurence John) ([Leica] Re: LUG Digest, Vol 29, Issue 369, digital M)