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Old Sep 13, 2005, 7:01 PM   #1
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I was informed yesterday that Konica Minolta no longer operate a camera distribution center for Canada. This was related to me from one of our larger Camera retailers, but is still not confirmed. Since this is new news I have no idea if a private distributor will be taking over, or if the brand will disappear from here for the time being at least.

JimC.

This is making my DSLR decision a little easier! Definitely not what I wanted to see.

Ira
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Old Sep 13, 2005, 8:53 PM   #2
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http://www.dpreview.com/news/0509/05..._liquidate.asp
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Old Sep 14, 2005, 7:39 AM   #3
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Didn't stop me from buying the 5D thought....and I live in TO....
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Old Sep 14, 2005, 8:10 AM   #4
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Monza76 wrote:
Quote:
I was informed yesterday that Konica Minolta no longer operate a camera distribution center for Canada. This was related to me from one of our larger Camera retailers, but is still not confirmed. Since this is new news I have no idea if a private distributor will be taking over, or if the brand will disappear from here for the time being at least.

JimC.

This is making my DSLR decision a little easier! Definitely not what I wanted to see.

Ira
Yes, I was reading about this before the announcement even came out (they sent out letters to dealers in Canada letting them know about it first).

I mentioned it in a thread last week, rightafter KM made it official:

Quote:
KM isn't without it's problems. For example, they are going to liquidate KM Photo Imaging, Inc. in Canada and go with a 3rd party distribution and service system there (as they do in some other countries). But, I feel comfortable with buying a product using Minolta lenses (especially due to Sony's announcement on releasing DSLR models next year using this lens mount).
http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...c.php?id=67562

For some reason, they seem to have priced themselves out of the Canadian Market.

For at least a couple of years, I've been hearingbuyers in Canada say that they were able to order a KM Digital Camera from dealers in NY (17th Street Photo, etc.), get them to stamp the warranty card before shipping it to them (some dealers will do this), and save money.

Buying this way worked out tobe less expensive, even after paying the shipping, taxes, duties, etc., compared to buying the same cameras in Canada.

I'm guessing that to maintain adequate staff,KM Canadakept raising prices, which snowballed, reducing sales even further, as more and more buyers ordered their cameras from the U.S. (speculation on my part).

The timing couldn't have been worse (IMO), with the 5D starting to ship. IMO, KM should have "nipped this thing in the bud" by aggresively pricing their cameras in Canada (even at a loss), until demand for their models increased towhere salesand profits warranted the staff needed to maintain operations.

I shouldn't try to play "armchair quarterback", not knowing how KM was structured in Canada.If going with a new Distribution Network via 3rd party distributors will give Canadians lower prices on KM products, then I guess I can't blame them.

But, I still would have kept a KM presence for PR purposes, and I would have made sure the new distribution system was in place before ceasing operations.


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Old Sep 17, 2005, 11:53 AM   #5
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JimC et al

Thanks for the responses. Yes the 7D has been expensive in Canada (about the same price point as the Canon 20d) and many stores could not get product for display and sale (none of the camera stores I visited in Atlantic Canada this year actually had a KM DSLR in stock, although all other DSLR brands, except Sigma, were present). The inability to even get my hands on one has shifted my interest to the Pentax *istDS2, the only thing missing is the anti-shake.

Personally I think whoever was on the ego trip that resulted in these cameras being labelled Konica Minolta instead of just Minolta should be tossed. Konica built great cameras but were better known for cheap film (just about every discount store here carried Konica film in the sale bin), while Minolta was a well respected name, here at least. Buyers are easily confused, so a name change such as this one (which even has a somewhat discordant ring to it) may have cost the company sales in this market. They should have labelled the p&s cameras as Konica and the DSLR and prosumer EVF models as Minolta. Knowledgeable buyers are aware of this but at least 60% of sales have to be to new users who are just confused.

Is the 7D a great camera, unquestionably, is the 5D a marvel in the entry level market, undoubtedly, but the company is a mess.

Ira
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