What if Ricoh bought all Samsung's mirrorless technology?

Started Sep 19, 2015 | Discussions thread
Alex Sarbu Veteran Member • Posts: 9,534
Re: What if Ricoh bought all Samsung's mirrorless technology?

anthony mazzeri wrote:

Alex Sarbu wrote:

Ricoh's own camera division was going nowhere - and M&A is the usual solution for that. Pentax was available.

I disagree with this sentiment.

All right, but it's a bit more than a mere 'sentiment'.

The GXR Mount-A12 especially was very well received, as has always the GRD line as well now culminating in the GR. So who knows what fantastic mirrorless sytem would have developed with or after the GXR had they not acquired Pentax DSLRs and the Q, which is now a question for the ages.

Ricoh's camera division was losing money so whatever they did before didn't work. Sorry, but I can't seriously consider "who knows what fantastic..." scenarios, those are wishful thinking. And I don't buy the idea that Ricoh had a readily available and obvious solution, and they chosen not to do it (just to spite their small niche of loyal users).

The GR is doing well, though it was launched after buying Pentax. It's a niche product though, as well as a standalone product - there's no system around it so people won't buy lenses (just a few accessories). Its initial production volume was a mere 5,000 units per month, much less than every Pentax DSLR except for the 645s.

Can't you see it? Ricoh without Pentax would continue to be a tiny little camera company playing well under the radar. Even continuing the GXR was not guaranteed. Exiting the camera business - if a turnaround was deemed as not feasible - was also a possibility.

Pentax just seemed like an opportunity which suddenly presented itself out of the blue rather than any sort of strategic or planned quest for a solution. The fact it took them so long to merge the two and changed the structure twice and even now still have confusion over the actual camera branding (which are Ricoh-brand or Pentax-brand?) tells me they were winging it and hadn't given it too much pre-consideration.

Of course it was an opportunity, and one that doesn't come often. Is it bad to act when such opportunities arise?

Confusion over the actual camera branding? The brand is clearly written on the camera. Are the other facts as well-studied as this one?

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