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01-08-2008, 09:27 AM   #91
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tom Lusk Quote
They didn't reduce the price and sell out all their inventory, then delay the next model year. Surely automobiles are just as difficult to manufacture as cameras?

Something doesn't make sense here. Is it me?
Those were my initial thoughts also, but after reading all the post there is a possible alternative scenario. Let's assume the low price we see is because the online distributors are taking a low margin while Pentax is making as much as ever. What if Pentax was able to increase production enough in the 4th quarter of 07 to cover projected sales for the 1st quarter of 08. It appears they have a strong enough relationship with their dealer network to ask these dealers to stock up to cover not being able to get any shipments in the 1st quarter of 08. This would allow Pentax to start building the new models at the beginning of 08.

It also seems that Pentax is willing to move inventory from one dealer to another depending on demand. This is a very unusual tactic and would give the dealers confidence in not getting stuck with inventory. This would also give a small company like Pentax extra time to gear up for a dramatic increase in production if they were convinced the new models will be big winners.

This would be a very risky approach but worth trying if you expect to double your sales.

Regards,

Ken

01-08-2008, 09:29 AM   #92
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QuoteOriginally posted by TaoMaas Quote
I could be wrong, but I'm thinking Pentax is hoping to have the new cameras on the shelves much earlier than March. Say mid-February or so. Announce them towards the end of January, then have cameras being delivered 2-3 weeks later. Who knows?
Normally this wouldn't be, well, normal. But, remember that we expected an announcement in September/October and it didn't happen. Rumor (on the positive spin side) says that this is because new Hoya money allowed them to make some improvements. But what if these improvements are basically tweaks and the camera was really ready to go at that point (i.e., announce September, ready November or December)? Even with a few months delay for improvements and testing, a January announcement followed by almost immediate availability might be possible.
01-08-2008, 10:26 AM   #93
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
In regards to the subject of Pentax sales figures, one truth seems to get lost in all the analysis:

It's the marketing, stupid.

It really, really is. If you add up all the factors that can affect camera sales - technical specifications of the product, POS displays, reviews, word of mouth, whatever micro-factor you can think of to throw in the pot and mix, it all pales in comparison to the overall affect of marketing on the industry.

I'm not just talking about ads in magazines and TV - I'm talking about Marketing, soup to nuts - the expensive, expansive activity that a company has to undertake to 1) get the product in the face of the consumer, 2) create buzz, 3) affect retailer interest, 4) gain leverage with retailers, 5) get the product reviewed more and more favorably, 6) get the product seriously considered for (multiple) industry rewards.
I've always believed that there are two basic ways to market something. One way is to create an image and sell based on that image. The best part of this kind of strategy is that it's not necessarily tied to the actual performance of the product. Your product isn't required to be better than the competition...it just has to be "cooler". Harley's and Ping golf clubs kinda fall into this category. The downside is that it's a very elusive thing to try and pin down effectively. The other way to market is to create a superior product, price it the same as your competitor (or lower), then let people know about it. Where Pentax is coming up short is in not having their cameras out in venues where they can be handled and looked at head-to-head with the offerings of Nikon, Canon, Olympus, and Sony. Not only is Pentax not in a lot of camera stores, they're not in Best Buy or WalMart, either. So a person wanting to buy a Pentax camera has to go looking for one. That's a HUGE problem even for as good a product as the K10D and pretty much eliminates all impulse buyers.
01-08-2008, 11:52 AM   #94
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QuoteOriginally posted by RiceHigh Quote
The KEY problem the sales of Pentax DSLRs have been going down slope since when the K10D had hit the street for one month or so.
That is NOT a specific problem for Pentax, as that's the general trend for Japanese market for all non-Canon non-Nikon models. The Olympus is showing the SAME trend, just check the graph. And Sony is also showing the SAME trend. The little elevation you see on the Sony curve at November is from A700 launch - but by December, the curve has already dropped back down!

QuoteQuote:
So, there must be some reasons, e.g., unfavourable reviewers' reports (particular points like soft jpeg),
This is mostly a non-issue in Japan.

QuoteQuote:
I believe that they should already gain more than 10% of the market by NOW and safely being the 3rd ranked company in the DSLR market, but not as the last one, AT PRESENT.
Pentax sales would jump with release of K20D and K200D, then after launch the sales curve would show a steady decline - that's unavoidable, that's Japanese market characteristics, which is very features and new models driven.

01-08-2008, 12:46 PM   #95
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QuoteOriginally posted by nosnoop Quote
That is NOT a specific problem for Pentax, as that's the general trend for Japanese market for all non-Canon non-Nikon models. The Olympus is showing the SAME trend, just check the graph. And Sony is also showing the SAME trend. The little elevation you see on the Sony curve at November is from A700 launch - but by December, the curve has already dropped back down!



This is mostly a non-issue in Japan.



Pentax sales would jump with release of K20D and K200D, then after launch the sales curve would show a steady decline - that's unavoidable, that's Japanese market characteristics, which is very features and new models driven.
Why do you bother w/ logic and reality?? Falls on deaf ears.
I also prefer to throw in the fact that Hoya had to restructure Pentax and fix a few of their failings (ie QC of parts ect.) not to mention it took them time to figure out if all the already placed strategies fit... This lack of lens production/new releases seems to me a direct and hard response to the merger. If I remember correctly camera sales dropped right at the merger time w/ the uncertainty that Hoya really cared a hoot about cameras. I seriously doubt any perceived (real or imaginary) shortcomings had a large impact on the sales, at least in relation to other more economic factors. Maybe some companies can fire up on a merger but conservative organizations like Pentax and Hoya are probably not one of them. Even Sony, after acquiring Minolta had predicted something like 100 new lenses AND 50% market share "soon". Riiiiiight......which company has really fallen down????????
Anyways on the gloomier side, the lost time better have been well spent...............
No great fears here because of some one year chart and yet finishing 3rd (as hoped) , that's for sure. If I remember correctly they were pushing 13-14% at one time. I for one will give them a bit of breathing room and past sales will help jump start new sales. The base has been built, but I agree that now they have to push it up a notch....Pentax will do better w/ committed buyers than w/ fly by night/ what have you built for me lately owners, though those do help
01-08-2008, 01:31 PM   #96
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QuoteOriginally posted by RiceHigh Quote
The KEY problem the sales of Pentax DSLRs have been going down slope since when the K10D had hit the street for one month or so. I think you still don't get my point that I believe Pentax *should* have done it much better, but they didn't. So, there must be some reasons, e.g., unfavourable reviewers' reports (particular points like soft jpeg), the inability to meet market demand, unfavourable news of the Hoya "merger", other commonly new user reported problems repeatedly (but users also reported that the problems were persistent and could not be resolved by Pentax etc) and so on.

My hope is that if Pentax can learn from those past experiences, I believe that they should already gain more than 10% of the market by NOW and safely being the 3rd ranked company in the DSLR market, but not as the last one, AT PRESENT.

Do note that in January 07 last year, there were no new models you mentioned which were all announced in around middle of the year.
Hmm I don't understand... Hoya announced 3 times in public announcements that Pentax was going to be a money driving force in the company and that they were giving money to make sure this would happen. The media and people like yourself made the Hoya merger bad because you said it was. Pentax and Hoya said ti multiple times that everything is great and expect new things, check Ned's blog and research bloomberg.com yourself. Another idiotic statement without proper research.

Oh, soft Jpegs... at least they are sharper than 5D jpegs. Still don't get you there and the only reviewers who said that are biased reviewers like these dumb american mags that every other page is a stupid newbie d40x ad and another rebel image. Many reviewers said the jpegs were awesome in their film-like quality and printed amazingly. Why doesn't Canon fix their aliasing problems that reviewrs talk about with their Jpegs? Oh, right, people can adjust the level of sharpening on Canons and typically do so.

Pentax has learned and they have new firmware due for the K10D that was specifically for the K20D. You will see much sharper Jpegs out of camera, but they will still leave the film-like look as the base setting I believe and who cares, it's a friggin setting! Who buys an electronic goody and does not play with the settings to get it the way they like? Stupid reviewers like Phil Askey who open the box, test the camera, and post biased opinions. He finally made good with the E-510 because he hated Olympus 4/3 cameras and now he likes them because he got to play with it for more than a day or two, actually a month.

Pentax is Pentax and now with Hoya we shall hopefully do things a little differently. Oh thats right, Hoya said that Pentax will do things differently, but you knew that right?
01-08-2008, 06:53 PM   #97
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QuoteOriginally posted by codiac2600 Quote
Hmm I don't understand... Hoya announced 3 times in public announcements that Pentax was going to be a money driving force in the company and that they were giving money to make sure this would happen. The media and people like yourself made the Hoya merger bad because you said it was. Pentax and Hoya said ti multiple times that everything is great and expect new things, check Ned's blog and research bloomberg.com yourself. Another idiotic statement without proper research.
Yes, Pentax was secure BUT it was far from certain that cameras (at least consumer versions) would survive. In some respects the merger was always set up to keep this little division "at arms length".
Hoya/Pentax themselves fueled these rumors as is shown by statements like this
Vague news at Nikkei.co.jp in Japan speculates that ongoing negotiations have been very difficult despite everyone's best efforts for a friendly union and that some people at Pentax are displeased with the agendas proposed to Pentax's board for future operations, perhaps related to Hoya's stated indifference to Pentax's camera division, which is less lucrative than their medical and high end optical equipment manufacturing.
This FUD was constantly alluded to and even a spokesperson for Hoya, addressing the shareholders< seemed to take a basic "we'll see" attitude. Paranoia re: Hoya and consumer cameras had a large basis in reality AFAIKT.
AND it went on and on................and on
When Hoya’s CEO said a few months ago at Hoya’s briefing that Hoya might sell out Pentax’s camera division to a third party, Pentax employees showed a huge unsatisfactory voice to the idea.
However, Nikkei reports that Pentax CEO, Mr. Urano, agrees with the TOB
.
.........................
Citing increased pressure from Asian and home electronics manufacturers, Hoya Pentax’s newly formed imaging division “will differentiate its offerings by specializing in high-value added products with unique technology and will focus on areas where it has a competitive edge. This area will be positioned as a foundation for development of new optical-related equipment and is expected to diversify into the life care and security business areas” the companies said in a statement.

There was no immediate word on what impact, if any, would be felt on Pentax’s U.S. camera business.

The merger was described as among the biggest in the precision equipment industry since the tie up of Konica and Minolta, which resulted in both firms pulling out of the U.S. camera business.

I think hoya was pleasently surprised by the camera division. It helped a bit that the medical division took a hit. Got to pay the bills...............
QuoteOriginally posted by codiac2600 Quote

Oh, soft Jpegs... at least they are sharper than 5D jpegs. Still don't get you there and the only reviewers who said that are biased reviewers like these dumb american mags that every other page is a stupid newbie d40x ad and another rebel image. Many reviewers said the jpegs were awesome in their film-like quality and printed amazingly. Why doesn't Canon fix their aliasing problems that reviewrs talk about with their Jpegs? Oh, right, people can adjust the level of sharpening on Canons and typically do so.
The type of sharpening was definitely different and, unfortunately was not ever looked at in the light of the whole image. Resolution was king but the edges appearred softer. Give and take.[/QUOTE]

As from an earlier post of mine:
Two phases lined up for Pentax turn-around:

> We see two phases to Pentax’s contribution. The first will be in the initial one to two years, where profit growth is driven by an operational review of existing businesses that brings Pentax products up to their rightful levels of profitability. The second will come in the third and fourth years, when we expect sales and profits to grow in the healthcare business, centering on endoscopes, as well as in optical components.

I see no mention of cameras in this and it actually sticks to HOYA's initial feelings of the merger.

Pentax has learned and they have new firmware due for the K10D that was specifically for the K20D. You will see much sharper Jpegs out of camera, but they will still leave the film-like look as the base setting I believe and who cares, it's a friggin setting! Who buys an electronic goody and does not play with the settings to get it the way they like? Stupid reviewers like Phil Askey who open the box, test the camera, and post biased opinions. He finally made good with the E-510 because he hated Olympus 4/3 cameras and now he likes them because he got to play with it for more than a day or two, actually a month.
QuoteOriginally posted by codiac2600 Quote
Pentax is Pentax and now with Hoya we shall hopefully do things a little differently. Oh thats right, Hoya said that Pentax will do things differently, but you knew that right?
All that I care that Hoya does is to fund them and get out of the way.

Last edited by jeffkrol; 01-08-2008 at 07:17 PM.
01-08-2008, 11:55 PM   #98
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeffkrol Quote
Vague news at Nikkei.co.jp in Japan speculates...
That's exactly what Nikkei has been doing - speculates. I wouldn't take what they say seriously. During the merger negotiations, they have published many speculations, and most turned out to be completely baseless like selling the Tokyo headquarters etc. And they like to take one or two statements out of context, and make a big deal out of it - more like tabloids reporting than a respected newswire.

01-09-2008, 03:38 AM   #99
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All true, I'm agreed.

QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
I enjoy reading these rumor threads, and I'm impressed by the level of insight and general knowledge of the DSLR marketplace shown here, but...

In regards to the subject of Pentax sales figures, one truth seems to get lost in all the analysis:

It's the marketing, stupid.

It really, really is. If you add up all the factors that can affect camera sales - technical specifications of the product, POS displays, reviews, word of mouth, whatever micro-factor you can think of to throw in the pot and mix, it all pales in comparison to the overall affect of marketing on the industry.

I'm not just talking about ads in magazines and TV - I'm talking about Marketing, soup to nuts - the expensive, expansive activity that a company has to undertake to 1) get the product in the face of the consumer, 2) create buzz, 3) affect retailer interest, 4) gain leverage with retailers, 5) get the product reviewed more and more favorably, 6) get the product seriously considered for (multiple) industry rewards.

Marketing fuels all of the above. And it costs very much.

When your competitors can out-market you, they have something analogous to shake reduction - a two-stop advantage (sales) at the same aperture (technical specs/model level.)

The good news is this - if you can innovate, you can stay in the game. And if you get a big money backer, you may be able to keep innovating and maybe even throw some money into the maw of the marketing monster.
01-09-2008, 04:20 AM   #100
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Besides the sales figures, look also to the ratio of money spent vs. real market share gain: for me Sony DSLR division is more at risk than Hoya one, i don't think it even really earns...after two or three other 6% selling models i don't see a real future.

I mean, Alphas selling like K10D is not a business like PS3 or Bluray, and Sony won't be too patient, soon or later they'll say "Oh, come on...DSLR sucks!"...Minolta risks to be one of the few company able to die twice .
01-09-2008, 05:56 AM   #101
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From a bussiness point of view, my guess is that Pentax (among other factors) couldnt afford to make aggresive marketing campaigns since they can hardly supply the actual number of costumers.
01-27-2008, 09:47 AM   #102
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QuoteOriginally posted by codiac2600 Quote
Pentax has learned and they have new firmware due for the K10D that was specifically for the K20D.
Just a quick question on this point...

Do you mean Pentax is going to be shipping new firmware upgrades for the K10D?

If so, do you also mean that one or more of these new upgrades will contain things they put in the K20D?
01-27-2008, 10:23 AM   #103
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I Agree with RH... ;-)

QuoteOriginally posted by B051LjKo Quote
DOnt forget that FF models are alot cheaper then the APS-C ones...BTW. You keep saying that K10D is an obsolete (useless, pathetic, "insert an insult" etc. etc. etc)... What about your beloved 5D, now if that isnt obsolete, then I really dont know the meaning of the word... And yet, that doesnt bothers you... Come on, i really to not know what to think of you.... are you a Troll?, are you an "eViL Pentay stole my meal" craybaby? Or what.... I mean, all you do is point the negative stuff... Why???, I mean, a broken K10D is 10 times better then that laughable toy Canon sells fot the same price... and yet, you still continue to bash the Pentax...

Blah... I give up... youre right Ricehigh, Pentax cameras are just plain rubbish... and all of us here, idiots... You've made your point, now move to the Canon forums please...
Come on.. RH is right and I am a Masochist. That is why I plan on using the K20D for my next Ad Campaign. I want to make sure that the client NEVER uses me again and doesn't pay me the 17000 euros for the job...

Thanks RH. If it wasn't for you, I might become successful and we wouldn't want that would we? God forbid, a photographer that is making a living with a Pentax DSLR.

Ben
01-27-2008, 11:42 AM   #104
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QuoteOriginally posted by benjikan Quote
Come on.. RH is right and I am a Masochist. That is why I plan on using the K20D for my next Ad Campaign. I want to make sure that the client NEVER uses me again and doesn't pay me the 17000 euros for the job...

Thanks RH. If it wasn't for you, I might become successful and we wouldn't want that would we? God forbid, a photographer that is making a living with a Pentax DSLR.

Ben
come on Ben, are you as famous as Ken Rockwell????...
Seems RH's hero is also underwhelmed by the k20d.lThe K20D is 14.6 MP, whoop-de-doo.
Ken Rockwell's Updates
Anyways, why bother bringing this thread back up. The'll be plenty of new ones soon.....
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