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08-16-2014, 04:35 PM   #1
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645Z Launch Party in Columbus - 28 August[

Pentax 645Z Launch Party in Columbus - 28 August
Midwest Photo Exchange is having a 645Z Launch Party. It's interesting because they do not carry Pentax, until now and it still is only the 645Z.

08-17-2014, 09:39 AM   #2
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That's great news, because maybe Ricoh/Pentax has seen the sense in softening its stance about whether a dealer has to carry the whole line-up.
08-17-2014, 10:08 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by texandrews Quote
That's great news, because maybe Ricoh/Pentax has seen the sense in softening its stance about whether a dealer has to carry the whole line-up.
I have heard from a former Pentax Rep (who moved to Canon) that the major reason Pentax lost American dealers was the draconian changes to the minimums and the credit terms in the Dealer Agreement about 15 years ago - long before Hoya and Pentax Corporation.
08-17-2014, 07:13 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
I have heard from a former Pentax Rep (who moved to Canon) that the major reason Pentax lost American dealers was the draconian changes to the minimums and the credit terms in the Dealer Agreement about 15 years ago - long before Hoya and Pentax Corporation.
These minimums are really onerous, and I've yet to have any sales guy/gal tell me how they work. I know from the dealer standpoints they absolutely discourage dealers from taking a chance with a new line.

Back in the '80's a friend of mine had a small shop, and dealt in a lot of used gear---it was a bit of a golden age for used gear back then. But the main new camera line(she had several) she had was Hasselblad---because no one else in town sold them. Largely that had to do with the $10K ('80's dollars) minimum buy-in, which was too steep for all the shops already burdened with minimums from the major makes in those days. She did ok, because she was the only game in town, although that minimum was a huge risk for her back then. She folded her tent back in the '90's, but now the one pro shop left in town (Canon, Nikon, Leica, plus some dribs and drabs of Fuji), one of 2 camera shops of any sort left, just can't justify the minimums to bring in new lines, even if they wanted to.

Doesn't make much sense to me....

08-17-2014, 08:04 PM   #5
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My father was an office products dealer. He had several lines of furniture. He was also an Officer of the National Office Products Assn.

Beginning in about 1975 office furniture manufacturers started raising their minimum single orders and minimum annual revenue to retain Dealer status, with the result that small dealers were forced out of multiple lines (and eventually out of the business). The purpose was to intentionally reduce the number of Dealers, since 'covering' them was expensive - fewer Dealers meant fewer people to service the Dealers and fewer salespeople to pay. Small Dealers could and can still buy from wholesaler intermediaries (but then they sell at a thinner profit margin, meaning they can't easily price-compete with the large Dealers). The trend continued apace until the emergence of Office Depot and Office Max and a very few, very large traditional Office Products direct Dealers and significantly fewer brands of office funriture.

Is there a parallel to be seen?

FWIW, in 1995 at age 70 my father bulldozed his downtown location and parked cars on the lot and sold the Dealer Agreements to a larger competitor. Until his death a couple years ago he made more money from the parking concession lease than he ever made selling office furniture.
08-17-2014, 08:29 PM   #6
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I was a camera store manager when Hoya took over. Yes, things were more difficult before, but when Hoya took over it made no sense to stock Pentax. We went from 2 million a year in Pentax to zero and nobody cared. I've talked to the store owner recently and it would be difficult to get him to stock much in the way of Pentax cameras.
08-18-2014, 03:09 AM   #7
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Well, to me these minimums seem like cutting your nose off to spite your face, long term. Once your dealer network dries up, which you actively encouraged per monochrome's description, then you're left to deal with the big chains, maybe bigger than you are, who then dictate to you how things are going to be. Seems like this is only a good model for the people in the board room---but finally not even for them. Although they don't really care, since they just move off to other boards---musical chairs up at that level. Just kind of rotten for everyone else...
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