Mirrorless Takes Another Hammering

Started May 17, 2013 | Discussions thread
Abrak
Senior MemberPosts: 1,342
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Re: Better Chart ..
In reply to Jeff, May 19, 2013

Jeff wrote:

rattymouse wrote:

As seen at sansmirror.com, the final numbers are in for mirrorless last year and the results are NOT pretty.  The main mirrorless players are either losing enormous money (Panasonic and Olympus), losing some money (Fujifilm), or barely eeking out a profit (Sony).

Canon and Nikon are profitable, but it is virtually certain that their DSLR sales are carrying that load.

Another bloodbath for the mirrorless makers, leading to the question, will they all survive until next year's financial reports??

-- hide signature --

9 years of Fujifilm camera usage, ended by rampant fanboyism.

I've slightly reformatted my chart from earlier in this tread to better show shipments of mirrorless cameras as a portion of the the shipment of all interchangeable lens cameras.  This is data from CIPA for worldwide shipments of interchangeable lens cameras by month since Jan, 2011.

To me, this doesn't look like a hammering for mirrorless cameras.  There does appear to be a problem with channel stuffing prior to Christmas, 2012, which may be the reason you kind find such good deals right now.

And, ss I said before, there may too many camera makers to survive in this narrow niche. Getting squeezed from below by the smartphone tidal wave, and from above by Nikon and Canon is a bad place to be.

To my mind, the strategy flaw is not in the developing this market per se, but in not more directly targeting the 100's of millions of users of those smartphones to higher levels of visual expression. They are not going to be impressed by f-stops and shutter speeds. They need to have a path to better pictures.  Sort of like what Steve Jobs brought to the computer industry.

I do think that there is at least a degree of truth to your 'channel stuffing' theory. Afterall CIPA records  show 'shipments' and not 'sales'. Also as CIPA has only stripped out mirrorless from interchangeable lens cameras for a little over a year it is a bit difficult to tell. Still, as we know, DSLRs have taken a fairly similar path, rising some what less and falling somewhat more.

So if we take the data for 'all' 'ilcs' and look at the last 8 quarters...

1Q 2011 3489

2Q 2011 3257

3q 2011 5503

4q 2011 3442

1Q 2012 4129 (+18% YOY)

2Q 2012 5147 (+58% YOY)

3Q 2012 5433 (-3% YOY)

4Q 2012 5446 (+58% YOY)

1Q 2013 3204 (-22% YOY)

...we can see the underlying trends....

1Q 2013 was a sharp fall on 1Q 2012 (-22%) it was an even sharper fall on 4Q 2012 (-41%). In fact 1Q 2013 was lower than 1Q 2011 - 2011, a year when the industry shipped less than 16m ILCs compared to 20m last year.

However, it does look to be a reaction to the very heavy shipping in 4Q 2012 which was up 58% YOY. In all likelihood, that means that the camera manufacturers heavily 'stuffed' the channels and that sales simply didnt come through.

Still we cant get away from at least 2 facts (1) this is the lowest quarterly figure for at least 2 years and (2) 1Q is not down on a particularly low quarter last year - in fact it is down on the lowest reported quarterly figure for last year.

Shipments would have to 'double' in the second quarter (to a record) in order for camera to get back to the first half of 2012 and to make anywhere near half the sales of last year. All the signs are that after a pretty good couple of years, demand for ILCs in general has gone very soft.

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