Companies

Camera makers mull price hike to beat margin slide

Abhishek Law Kolkata | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on January 02, 2012

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The sharp devaluation in the rupee has taken a toll on the margins of digital camera makers. Canon India - the Indian subsidiary of Tokyo headquartered Canon - has hinted at a possible price revision in January. Market leader Sony too indicated a similar possibility in 2012, if currency fluctuations persist.

Currently, the digital camera market in India is growing at the rate of 40 per cent annually. Camera makers sell 32 lakh units each year. The major players include Sony, Nikon and Canon.

In an e-mail response to Business Line, Mr. Sunil Nayyar, Senior General Manager, Sony India, said: “As of now, we have not hiked the prices of our products. We have tried to optimize cost and not pass on the burden to the customers.”

“However, in case the rupee further depreciates, all companies will be pressurised to correct product prices,” he added, indicating possibilities of a price revision.

According to market sources, intense competition amongst camera makers in a price sensitive market has led to situation where no one has taken a lead in price revision, despite the fact that margins have taken a beating. Interestingly, camera prices were slashed during the festive season this year. Price cuts, according to market sources, were as high as 20 per cent for entry level digital cameras while entry level SLR prices were down by 5 to 10 per cent.

Mr Alok Bhradwaj, Senior Vice-President, Canon India, confirmed that its bottomline had been affected primarily because of currency fluctuations, thereby leading to a hike in input costs. The company, according to him, was mulling a hike in the price of its offerings by nearly 8 per cent. A final decision in this regard was likely to be taken in January provided the slide continued.

“Following the price revision, entry level camera prices are likely to go up by nearly Rs 500 . The impact of the price hike would be more for high-end models,” he said.

Canon India, with offerings in the IT peripherals section that include printers and scanners, had made an upward revision in product prices by at least 6 per cent in November this year following the tsunami in Japan (its manufacturing hub), Thailand floods and devaluation of the rupee.

>abhishek.l@thehindu.co.in

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Published on January 02, 2012
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