The Wall Street Journal (for those of you who might not know it, an otherwise fine newspaper* with a loopy and radical philosophical foundation, much like the Christian Science Monitor in that regard), reports that Canon Camera, considered "a bellwether for major Japanese exporters," has lowered its profit outlook and its sales projections for interchangeable-lens cameras. "The uncertain outlook for the year-end shopping season prompted Canon to again trim its outlook for sales of interchangeable-lens cameras to 8 million, or 44% of the global market, from 9 million in the July outlook. It originally foresaw sales of 9.2 million cameras at the beginning of this year."
Canon CFO Toshizo Tanaka feels the downturn is "only a temporary phenomenon."
(You did notice that market share number on the way by, didn't you? Wow.)
(Thanks to James Erlandson)
*And for those of you who might not know what a newspaper is, Craig Ferguson says it's "like a big papery blog filled with yesterday's news."
Original contents copyright 2013 by Michael C. Johnston and/or the bylined author. All Rights Reserved. Links in this post may be to our affiliates; sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
(To see all the comments, click on the "Comments" link below.)
Featured Comments from:
Robert Roaldi: "I can't get my head around the notion that eight million cameras is not very good."
Ned Bunnell: "I was in my local Costco yesterday helping a neighbor buy a camera. I've always done my informal market research at this location. They just halved the camera display and moved it out of the high traffic location. My guy who manages the category said sales of SLR's are off 50% this year and he reduced the number of slots for compacts by half."
Thom Hogan: "In any given month this year, the U.S. cash register receipts for DSLR cameras have been down from –17% to –23% year-to-year, and the U.S. is the market showing the least drop in terms of unit shipments made from Japan. Interpretation: unsold inventory here.
"Canon's market share assertion still seems off: current CIPA numbers estimated forward show 15.9m interchangeable lens cameras shipping in 2013. Forty-four percent of that is 7m units. For Canon's assertion to be correct, the actual CIPA shipments would need to hit 18.2m units. So far this year (through August), only 10.6m units have been shipped—so Canon's projections indicate that they think that 7.6m units will be shipped in four months. That didn't even happen in the best four months of 2012.
"This is one of the things I don't like about the Japanese business press: they don't challenge assertions, nor do they seem to ask questions that would get to why there's a discrepancy in the numbers.
"The problem for the Japanese remains: they need to sell off increasing inventories in subsidiaries already booked as revenue, while they need to boost units sold to subsidiaries. Not going to happen. At least not easily. For Canon's assertion that this is just a temporary downturn to prove true (at least in the short term of 2013–14) they need to:
- Clear inventories out of subsidiaries
- Increase shipments to subsidiaries
- Sell the increased shipments with no inventory build up
"Otherwise they're just in the same position in 2014 as they are in 2013.
"Yes, Eamon's right, there is a downturn, and Canon is right about that, but the question at hand isn't the downturn but the length of it. 'Only temporary' doesn't put any bounds on the problem. It could be 'only temporary' for five years or for one. The length of 'temporary' may be the difference between the industry surviving as we known it or not."