Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Nikon US to file Chapter 11

Visible briefly today before it was pulled (, Nikon announced that Nikon US was filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. It was outlined that plummeting camera sales in the face of the current economic downturn had made continual US operation unprofitable. It is as yet unknown what this means for Nikon in Japan and Nikon in Europe.

As USA Today remarked in its own article on Nikon's pulled press release, it was unsurprising that Nikon was collapsing from within. During the golden years when people would buy a new digital camera every year chasing image quality upgrades they didn't need, the profits rolled in. Now that everybody has a camera of optimal quality, there's just no reason to buy newer cameras.

Indeed, from my own experience, my cellphone produces images on a par if not better than a Nikon D70 from 10 yeas ago. The new mirrorless cameras sweep Nikon's digital SLRs out with the trash, being faster, easier to use and cheaper.

As of earlier today, Nikon's President, Kazuo Ushida was unavailable for comment, according to USA Today. @kazuoushida, the personal Twitter account of Kazuo Ushida has been closed. It is understood that Mr Ushida may well have been rushed to hospital after attempting Seppuku (ritual atonement suicide committed by many Samurai which involved cutting out the stomach with a knife).

Where does this leave Nikon users is the big question. Will Nikon's products continue to receive support albeit from 3rd countries? Will the Chinese company Damon Paper pursue the remains of Nikon to produce cameras under the Damon Paper label?

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