Ricoh is considering to withdraw from the camera business

Ricoh is considering to withdraw from the camera business – this news comes from Nikkei, here is the English version:

The Japanese company will radically review a production and manufacturing strategy centered on cameras for the retail market, including such brands as Pentax and GR. Options include withdrawing from this segment altogether.

In America, Ricoh is laying off 1,000 workers as it restructures its sales network to reduce overlap with companies it has acquired. In Japan, the company plans to offer early retirement, including to employees who have stayed on past the usual retirement age.

Update: Ricoh issued a statement denying the report, saying that they are focusing on expanding “high-value-added models” (Google translated from Japanese).

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  • jar_jar_

    Ricoh put out a statement denying the report, saying they’re focusing on expanding “high-value-added models” (Google translated from Japanese). (in Japanese)

    • Thanks, I will add it to my post.

    • Mistral75

      The corresponding press release (in Japanese):


      Today, there was a report on Ricoh shrinking their camera business and considering withdrawing from the consumer market but this article was not published by Ricoh.

      Ricoh’s Consumer Camera Business focuses resources on high value-added products such as PENTAX and GR that are enjoyed by many people enjoying photography as a hobby. In addition, the 360° camera “RICOH THETA” is the market leader of image acquisition devices in the new and rapidly growing VR and AR markets, and we plan to expand this business further. Furthermore, we intend to expand and develop the imaging business by creating a new market that would utilize our camera technology in the BtoB domain of business solutions.

      It’s mainly damage control with nothing specific. Note that they do not explicitly deny what has been published earlier by Nikkei, they simply underline it was not published by them.

  • Mistral75

    There is also a press release (in English):

  • Mistral75

    The biggest threat to Ricoh Imaging is included in these few words:


    Ricoh have a new #1 (Mr Yamashita) since April 1st.

  • TinusVerdino

    They were very quick to deny. That gives some confidence. It is not like they said we have no current plans to axe it, or something vague like that. They expressed a commitment.

    • Mistral75

      The only (implied, not explicit) denial is that of a closure of the consumer camera business. Otherwise, what they say is pretty in line with what was reported by Nikkei Asian Review.

      • TinusVerdino

        That was the important bit. They already expressed the focus on high value added models on the cp+.

        This is a commitment: Ricoh’s
        Consumer Camera Business concentrates resources on high value added products such as PENTAX and GR that are enjoyable to many people who are enjoying photos as a user and a hobby.
        In addition, the 360 ​​° camera “RICOH THETA” is the market leader of input devices in the new market where the VR and AR markets are rapidly growing, and we plan to expand our business further.
        Furthermore, we intend to comprehensively expand and develop the imaging business by creating a new market that utilizes our camera technology also in the solution business domain for BtoB.

        Don’t try to read more in it than it is. Spreading FUD will start to sing around and can be damaging to a brand.

        • Mistral75

          May be I am more used to deciphering damage control press releases published by listed companies than you are. It might even happen that part of my job be to (re)write some of them…

          May be I am biased by said professional activities.

          Time will tell.

          • Kunzite

            Maybe you’re just a victim to confirmation bias 😉

          • Mistral75

            No because I would very much like the opposite to materialize itself.

        • Kunzite

          As new links are added to the chain – more sites taking over others’ interpretation and deviating from the source – the content becomes more and more negative. This article is bad enough; how about one titled “Bye-bye Pentax”?

  • First Kodak, last month Samsung now Ricoh

  • Mistral75

    Another article which quotes Ricoh CEO Yamashita’s comments today on the future of Ricoh, including the camera business.

    The summary of the considerations pertaining to the camera business, made by Daikokuya on Pentax Forums:

    1. Regarding to money-losing camera business, Ricoh is going to cultivate corporate demand for its 360-degree-camera series Theta.

    2. CEO Yamashita denied the immediate withdrawal from consumer camera business like Pentax.

    3. He said Ricoh is going to narrow down camera models. Ricoh has started to consider whether Ricoh should truly do business for some non-core-business including camera. Ricoh is going to restructure in the next three years.

    4. He recognizes the reorganization and restructuring of camera business as a subject to consider.

  • Randy Stiefer

    Well if they do kill pentax may i suggest fuji. Great primes that will remind you of those nice limited primes.

  • Alex Morales

    Why is it that every company that has bought the Pentax brand never really marketed the product the way they should have? If they had gone the route of Canikon in their marketing, maybe Pentax would have had a larger share of users?

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