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Nikon Authorized DealerNet Xpress program canceled

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I received several emails that Nikon canceled its DealerNet XPress program:

"The climate in which we do business has evolved, and Nikon inc. Imaging Division must do the same. In light of this changing business climate, we have decided to discontinue our Nikon Authorized DealerNet Xpress dealer classification.

Your appointment as a Nikon Authorized DealerNet Xpress Dealer will expire on ---. Accordingly, this is notice that Nikon Inc. is not renewing your appointment as a Nikon Authorized DealerNet Xpress Dealer and your business relationship with Nikon will expire on ---.

If you wish to apply for an appointment as a Nikon Imaging Dealer (NID), please write to Sales Administration Manager, Nikon Inc., 1300 Walt Whitman Road, Melville, New York 11747.

We thank you for your past support and wish you well in the future."

The "DealerXPress" is the lowest dealer classification level. The regular Nikon Imaging Dealer (NID) has not been impacted. Generally, this means that there will be less Nikon authorized dealers in the US. Theoretically, any Nikon equipment purchased from an Xpress dealer will not be considered to be bought from an authorized reseller after April 30th, 2011. Many of the impacted stores are still sitting on unsold Nikon inventory. Maybe Nikon will make an exception, but buyers be aware!

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  • Brian

    What does this mean? Is this going to put smaller internet dealers out of commission?

    • http://tumbleweed-092.livejournal.com/ Slow Gin

      Same question here. Is there anyone to explain this?

      • http://nikonrumors.com/ [NR] admin

        Generally it means that there will be less Nikon authorized dealers, unless they all apply for the regular Nikon Imaging Dealer (NID) program.

        • http://nikonrumors.com/ [NR] admin

          and yes, this is targeted at small stores (not only online)

          • southphoto

            I work at a small store that has been loyal and sold Nikon products for 50 years. We get a letter, a stinking letter in the mail telling us weve been dropped. Nikon has just made a very poor dec. Our business will never be large enough to be a NID, the owners are into there 70s. Nikon isnt just messing around with our sales, they are messing around with our livelyhood. Really NIKON a letter?!

            • Northphoto

              Man, that guys a moron. I cant belive Caleb would post something like that!

    • http://melbournecameras.net James Noel

      New store here. Applied for Nikon account in January. Have heard zilch from them. Even offered to prepay for everything. Yes, it is 50K. Not asking for credit. Just some merchandise to sell!

      Canon. Applied two months ago. Same deal. 50K upfront. Yes, we have the money. No response.

      Sony. Ok’d request immediately. Lots of Sony merchandise rolling in. Didn’t even ask for a minimum purchase. Sony rep came here from midwest to our tiny little store and offered signage, advertising, and HUGE AMOUNT OF SUPPORT!

      Tamron and Sigma. Immediately said yes.

      So, what’s a store to do? We love cameras! We want to have a fantastic range of products available. We DONT LIKE BEING IGNORED! Seems that the future of this business will be on the internet with folks getting their cameras delivered in big white or brown trucks while wondering, “hey, I wonder why there are so many empty stores in town?” Hope you don’t want to touch that camera before you buy it!

      PS – We sell what few cameras we can get for the same as online dealers. We DO offer free classes/education and support if “god help us” your camera/lens/flash has an issue. We have loaners. We have every accessory under the sun. Just don’t come here looking for a Nikon or Canon. They aren’t interested in small town america!

      • http://www.flickr.com/photos/friedtoast/ Fried Toast

        Sounds like both Canon & Nikon are getting too big for their britches. Reading this makes me want to go buy a Pentax.

  • broxibear

    I don’t think the relationship between smaller camera shops and Nikon was that great, this isn’t going to help it.
    Smaller shops just can’t compete against the larger retailers…here in the UK many are closing down, even pro dealers.

    • broxibear

      I’ve never seen any DealerNet Xpress retailers in the UK so I’m assuming it’s a U.S. thing only ?

      • http://nikonrumors.com/ [NR] admin

        Yes, I think this is only for US but I am not 100% sure.

        • broxibear

          Just had a quick search, in the UK we have Premier Dealers and Professional Dealers…

          Premier Sites
          Our Premier Sites carry the widest range of Nikon SLR cameras and lenses, digital and compact cameras, accessories and binoculars.

          High street stores
          There are a number of high street stores, all over the country, that carry a range of Nikon cameras and lenses.

          Online dealers
          We’ve recommended a number of online Nikon dealers who offer the best service, ease of use and security. You can browse their websites and read more about Nikon’s range of equipment, and they will deliver safely to your door.

          Nikon Binocular Specialist Dealers
          If you’re looking for more specialist equipment, Nikon Binocular Specialist Dealers carry our entire binocular range.

          Nikon Professional Camera Dealers
          For expert advice on cameras used for specialist purposes, visit a Nikon Professional Camera Dealer.

  • carol wood

    I don’t think it’s directed at smaller dealers.
    It’s likely to avoid so much grey market merchandise being sold over the internet. I’m sure that small, yet reputable companies will still get their required Nikon gear.

    • http://www.flickr.com/photos/KaceyJordan CTLG

      +1 Sounds more like it.

    • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

      Actually, it would be MORE likely that gray market merchandise would be sold if Nikon doesn’t authorize all the Xpress dealers as NID dealers. But the thing is, Nikon’s dealer programs have commitment levels to them, so almost certainly not all the Xpress dealers will apply for NID, because it’s an increase in commitment. So, the two choices are: (1) we lose some small dealers; or (2) those small dealers buy on the gray market to stock their shelves.

      With gray, Nikon wants it both ways, at the expense of their customers. Nikon certainly knows where the gray products come from: overstocking in some regions, especially ones not served by a wholly-owned subsidiary. But it’s a “sale” to Nikon, so what do they care? Of course, they don’t want that to come at the cost of a sale to a subsidiary, so they have these silly gray market restrictions to scare people into buying official imports. Hey, it’s a win-win. For Nikon and Nikon subsidiaries. Not for customers. This move by Nikon to get rid of Xpress changes nothing in that equation.

      • Richard

        Nikon contributes to the confusion by not marking their products in some obvious manner as “authorized U.S. import”. The poor consumer is the one who is disadvantaged. Shame on Nikon.

      • Ken Elliott

        A similar thing happened in the software industry (that big CAD company). Sales of the flagship product started to flatten, and they needed to show an increase in revenue to hide that fact and keep stockholders happy. Their solution – cut smaller dealers. It’s the old 80/20 rule – 80% of sales were done by 20% of the dealers. So by cutting out the low volume dealers, they could reduce staff greatly.

        First, they started cutting margins. Then they raised the commitment level. This created a “sell-more-or-get-cut” situation. Then they opened up a web store and started selling direct. This squeeze had the desired effect – the number of units sold didn’t change much, but they lowered their overhead and made more profit per unit (direct sale and lower dealer margins).

        They went from about 4000 dealers to less than 200. Yeah – they cut 95% of dealers. Local support vanished for most.

        Should users care? Most won’t. You will lose more dealers, and more of us will have to deal with Nikon directly. Thom has often written that Nikon USA needs to step up their customer-service game. He’s right. With few dealers acting as “voice of the customer”, there is a good chance that Nikon will get worse – not better.

    • Phil

      Are you kidding? The biggest gray market dealers are the biggest dealers, like B&H and Adorama.

  • FrancoDMD

    Nikon is getting too elitist, and you know what happends to companies that do that… then they blame it on the financial situation. A great product should be available to everyone at a fair price of course for the company as well as the consumer.

    • Brian

      Nikon is no Leica. This is a completely rational business decision on Nikon’s part as far as I can tell. You want to drive sales through the most profitable channels… the smallest “dealers” are just not that profitable to support. Grow or die is the mantra. Makes complete sense to me.

  • jerl

    This move doesn’t really seem to make sense to me at first- I would normally presume that Nikon would want more dealers to move out more stock to customers. I suppose their rationale for this is that since supplies are so constrained, Nikon would make sales faster by only giving inventory to larger dealers, who will be able to move their stock much faster.

    Consider that all the top end pro items are almost always sold out at the big stores, but can often be found at smaller retailers if you look long enough. In this case, it would be better for Nikon to send all their stock to the larger places so they end up in customers hands (thus giving income to Nikon), rather than sitting on a store’s shelf for 3 months.

    If this is the real reason for this move, than I think that this is the wrong move to make. This might allow for a better distribution of the very limited inventory for the time being, but it risks having a lot of small dealers dropping Nikon equipment completely and pushing other brands more. These smaller stores are often the ones dealing with customers personally more, so brand name as a whole will drop. This is a long term consequence that doesn’t exactly help Nikon, now that it is facing growing pressure from other manufacturers like Sony, Samsung or Panasonic.

    Personally, I think Nikon should have spent the past few years figuring out how to expand manufacturing resources of their pro equipment more, or at the very least figuring out how to distribute inventory better (so you wouldn’t have items out of stock in one region for months and have to give rebates in another). Now that the crisis has hit, though, it is probably too late to do anything like this- their cash flow will be heavily constrained, and with limited sales in the future, it doesn’t look like they can do any of this.

  • paf

    Probably just a way Nikon realized that they might have inventory supply issues and reduction of overhead related to maintaining larger dealer base and possibly a stab at reducing gray market items. Either way we look at it, it’s not the best news for us, consumers. World according to Nikon… (sigh).

  • Tony

    This could help Nikon manage their inventory better. Even though Nikon is a top of the line in image and optical business, its revenue is far apart from many other electronic companies and they are eating up Nikon’s share. And just like other small companies, distributing product efficiently is a challenge.

    As for a small retail store, I hope that online taxing would bring back their business but of cause the small store have to hold out until the time comes.

    And Yeah! I also hope that this could help kick many bait and switch online stores out of the market (or at least change the way they’re doing their businesses).

  • Phil

    This is simply shareholder mentality.

    • Global

      +1

    • http://bit.ly/IrUT64 Barbu

      +2

    • Brian

      …and as a Nikon shareholder I’m all in favor of stripping costs out of the business and driving sales through the most profitable channels. Thank you Nikon.

      +3

      • Nikon Dealer

        This is short term mentality. Margins today lead to shorts tomorrow. Loss of dealers leads to high potential of failure. Think that larger companies don’t go belly up. Misguided mentality. Ask circuit city, Comp USA, etc. These are all companies that bought the farm. If you have all your eggs in a small number of bigger company baskets you will end up with largeer hits should the companies go under. Better to have a large network of small companies than a handful of larger ones…

  • Beats

    So how are we supposed to know exactly which stores that used to be authorized dealers no longer are?

    I can very easily see myself looking at an ad, finding something I want, deciding to go check it out and probably buy the item from the ad the next weekend … and who’s to let me know that in the three days between the ad and the weekend purchase this place is no longer an authorized Nikon dealer?

    • PiXLPeeper

      +1

      Does anybody know where to find an updated list before purchasing?
      Calling Nikon is an option but now that most (all?) customer service has been outsourced answers’ reliability has gone way down!

      Admin, any tips?

      • http://nikonrumors.com/ [NR] admin

        I don’t think Nikon will make a big deal out of this, especially in the next few months after they canceled the program.

        • PiXLPeeper

          -1

          I hear from several different sources, real people mostly prosumers and a couple of pros, that Nikon is nowadays being very difficult to deal with for warranty repairs which they deny or attempt to charge for and/or performing dubious quality repairs (especially on lenses) and are prone to lengthy delays, misplaced orders and inability to track gear before they’re ready to ship back!

          Not sure if this is new company policy or they were never prepared to be flooded by non-P&S consumers and prosumers and may be unwilling to respond to the expected increase in support requests.

          for all of this I have posted ads for all my Nikon stuff and, if I can get a fare price, I’ll switch to Canon or another emerging brand!

          • Global

            Nice try, Canon Representative.

            • http://bit.ly/IrUT64 BM

              Sorry, but not a C-word representative. It’s the voice of many others… First, they’ve been lured by Nikon trusty autofocus; low-light ability was also a factor. But when a pro (as in: his income and his job) depends on having reliable support, they suddenly start to remember the level of commitment shown by the C company. Truckloads of stuff shipped near main events, instant response, and friends (who asked the local guru) not having to bash his head in for a true warranty service.
              And that started going down the hill at least since last year; but does anybody have to be reminded about Nikon policy when it comes to rubber pieces falling off the camera? Horror stories…
              To sum it up: great engineering, poor marketing and sales.

            • Mock Kenwell

              Yes, well, the major upside being that FEWER Nikon cameras need service than their Canon counterparts.

            • http://bit.ly/IrUT64 BM

              Wishful thinking. And I’m sorry for being an insider; working at a camera store will quickly move you over that impression.

    • David 7703

      Agree with Beats..

      Do we now need to proof our local Nikon dealer? Or take a picture of the “Authorized Nikon Dealer” sign in the window, just in case…. (eye’s rolling..)

      • PiXLPeeper

        +1

        You bet!
        Especially when you’ll need to take them to small claims court to protect your investment while under warranty…

  • nick

    i bought most of my stuff second hand anyway

  • rob williams

    talking about all the gray market. Can anyone recommend someone to fix a broken 80-400 mm Nikon lens. It is in Seattle but I can not find anyone and Nikon do not want to know as it is gray. thanks.

  • ZoetMB

    There is no way Nikon can get away with not supporting the warranty for any equipment bought from a U.S. dealer that was not a grey market import. The Attorney General of each State would be all over them and there might even be a class action lawsuit, especially if they try to screw some consumer who also happens to be a lawyer.

    There’s no law against Nikon ending a relationship with dealers they don’t want (although I think this is a bad idea), but they have to support the warranty. It doesn’t matter when you buy it.

    • http://micahmedia.com Micah

      Exactly!

      • Global

        Yes, if you know the law then all this fear goes away. Its quite simply strict liability for the product:

        - The manufacturer,
        - The distributor,
        - The retail store…

        All three are RESPONSIBLE for the product being as advertised and coming complete, whole, and supported under the quality proposed. It doesn’t matter if Nikon ends relationships with certain retail shops — they are not ALLOWED to end the relationship with their product. You can sue all three of them, Nikon Japan, Nikon USA or whoever imported yours, and especially the retail store — if Nikon failed to perform according to the warranty included with their product. Even if language suggested only authorized dealers are allowed, without an actual list of authorized dealers provided this would be too general of a statement. And even if for some reason Nikon was let off the hook, as a last resort, you could sue the store and distributor, because they advertised for a warrantied product, as they all say “5 Years USA” right on the Box.

        Only previously used or clearly misused products can fall outside of this liability.

  • http://photoartbymark.zenfolio.com photoartbymark

    i bought two lenses second hand and they are great, like nick

  • Nick

    This entire “grey market”, restricted warranty issue is completely outdated in the framework and spirit of the current global economy.

    You purchased a Nikon product you should have the same warranty anywhere in the entire world – regardless of where you bought it.

    It is time to put and end when a manufacturer can cherry pick how the consumers of the same product are treated differently – based on which country they happen to live or purchase the same product.

    If you purchased a Nikon product you are a Nikon customer. Period.
    Even if you live on the Moon.

    Zero tolerance for customer indiscrimination.

  • Ronan

    In all honesty i found small store dealers to be overpriced.

    Sure their service was more friendly but still overpriced (they can’t compete vs big stores and deff not vs ebay and online stores).

    Will that change something for us? Yes, but slightly.

    Stores that can stay for the fight will apply for a NID.

    • PHB

      Which is the real issue I suspect.

      In 1960 about 30% of the cost of an imported good would be shipping, 10% customs, another 30% would be manufacture and 30% the retail markup.

      Today shipping is less than 1% of the cost and customs duties run lower. The manufacturing cost is about 25% and the retail markup is typically 70% of the recommended retail price. That is why online stores etc can routinely give 30% discounts, the retail markup is huge.

      The reason these margins continue is that if you look at the markup on typical goods in terms of cash, the markups have actually declined. Virtually everything we buy in stores today is much cheaper in real terms than in 1960s. When I bought my first digital camera in 2000, I paid $1200 for the camera and the chip, today the same sort of camera sells for $80. The price drops in real terms to the 1960s are even more dramatic.

      Manufacturing and shipping have become vastly more efficient since the 1960s but efficiency gains in retail have been pretty modest and what efficiencies were realized were essentially captured by the major retailers until the Internet came along. Walmart has much lower costs than any other retail store but they only pass on a tiny fraction of those gains to the consumer.

      So what is happening now is that the least efficient retailers are being squeezed out and the majors are starting to feel price pressure for the first time.

      Sony saw this problem over a decade ago which is why they have ‘Sony Style’ centers round the country. These are like a retail store but the salespeople are not on commission. You can buy stuff from the store if you really want to, but that is not why they are there. The purpose is to demonstrate stuff to consumers who will then buy online.

      I think we will see Nikon and Canon do the same before long and we may well see chains set up to support multiple brands in this way.

      • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

        You’re remembering some other industry.

        In the photo industry, the typical dealer discount is about 15%. You can improve that by paying in advance and buying in quantity, but there’s no way that the retail markup on a camera is 70% as you suggest.

    • Nikon Dealer

      Don’t forget Value. Value is not the lowest price. Ebay does not offer the same value a store front dealer does. Nor an online shop. If you have gotten bad service from a store front you got a bad apple. Most store front small shops make a living off of taking care of the customer. Its what makes them different from the big guys.

  • Spraynpray

    Looks like Nikon are lowering overhead by removing the small sellers that sell cheap to protect the bigger sellers (who are probaly putting them under pressure to do it["How can we compete?"]). They are prolly doing it now because they have supply issues so the effect on revenue is reduced. Looks like house-keeping to me. If it affects warranty or prices, I’m off.

    • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

      I doubt Nikon would do much, if anything, “to protect the bigger sellers.” Nikon looks out for themselves first and foremost. If they’re reducing dealer count, they see a direct advantage to themselves in doing that.

  • Markus

    Have to say that I only know professional dealers in Benelux and Japan. Every Nikon dealer (by this I mean a dealer which gets it’s stock from Nikon) can sell everything Nikon is offering, so also the 600mm lens or the D3X. A big difference with professional dealers is that they can literally offer more service (by means of stock, personnel may be trained to do repairs under warranty of Nikon, they can give services to NPS members, like camera’s on loan during repair.) A standard dealer does not offer this, but still is able to sell you a D3X and they can have it in stock as well, and offer for a price which is lower than that of a Professional dealer.

  • Beats

    Thank you Patrick for that explanation! It makes all the sense in the world, and is reassuring for me as a consumer.

    I don’t know if your friend is the “typical” Xpress dealer, but if so it makes sense for Nikon to cancel this level of dealer. With resources only stretching so far it seems more (after reading your explanation) like a smart move to me for Nikon to cancel what appears to be a kind of glamor Tupperware/MaryKay style “dealer” of the seriously NON-power dealer variety. That’s lots and lots of paperwork and support for some folks to be able to buy their own personal Nikon equipment at discounted prices.

    Who knows, maybe Nikon will now concentrate on its more manageable dealer base and learn how to provide actual Service?

    • Tony

      +1
      Nikon sure make a rather smart move. Since there is a higher demand in mid-high grade equipments, they don’t have to sell it at lower price for anyone anymore (but I’m sure they will do for particular person/studios). They either have to do this or build a new fab, so I guess they choose the first choice.

      As far as the effect to nikonrumors.com only admin can tell, but I hope you can make some sort of agreement with them(maybe as a journalist :))

  • bernie javier

    We all know that Nikon always stand behind their products. If this is about big dealer vs. the small then it’s justifiable. In my experience, I get better service from big dealers (here in Toronto). I never go to small no-chain shop. Try after sales service, repair, return or exchange and you’ll find out what i mean. Say, at Henry’s , they have a 14-day refund and 21-day exchange. Their pricing is a wee higher but you pay for peace of mind and assurance that if something goes wrong with your purchase, they can always make it right.

    This is good for buyers, this gets us more protected from bad service from certain dealers. Some small dealers may be a convenience to you due to their proximity but who wouldn’t cross the seven seas to get a Nikon?

    • PiXLPeeper

      May be true but after the 21st day you are at the mercy of Nikon and, believe me, customer service, tech support and repairs have gone down the tubes!
      Would you be happy after a surgery at the best hospital performed by the best doctors if you get no more care after you wake up from the anesthesia?
      If you totally disagree, would you please buy all my babied Nikon gear at a fair price so I can move on?

  • http://ronscubadiver.wordpress.com Ron Scubadiver

    Someone tell me what has a retail markup of 70% and I will get into that business! I wonder if the reduction in the number of dealers is one way of adjusting to the loss of production due to the earthquake. It looks like it will take at least a year for things to get back to normal, and normal was not so great.

  • Mandrake

    Just came back from a local store and the owner wasn’t too happy. His exact words were “Nikon cut me off”. He says he can’t even get his rep to return his phone calls.

    • Nikon Dealer

      We are a Nikon DealerXpress Dealer. We literlaly were given 2 days. I got to talk to David Lee Sr Vice President the first day. He promised me a call back by end of day to let us know what was going on and guess what never heard from him. Tried the following days and we have been avoided since. To answer some of the above statements there is no bigger shop capabile of offering the level of service smaller (reputable) shops can offer. Nikon could have easily given some of us the time to get rid of inventory or better yet give us some options, but they didn’t. Keep in mind all of us have loyally offered their product and worked hand and hand with them. We have supported customers tirelessly. To be given 2 days before we loose the dealership is a company that is choosing not to handle their dealers with integrity. And believe it or not the end customer as well. We have contracted to help all our customers to the highest levels and if Nikon cuts us off it hampers that relationship all the way to the consumer. Look all things aside the fact is Nikon could have handled the whole thing a whole lot better. The next step up is NID (Nikon Imaging Dealer). The dealers have the same pricing they just are required to buy more per year and have a dedicated rep. We are given that option but at the ground level (ie submit all the paperwork again as if we are starting over). Nikon could have given us all a route for follow. There is nothing “justifiable” in killing relationships with customers or dealers…

  • Another FormerDealer

    As a, now former, Nikon XPress dealer here’s some additional thoughts.

    You pay less at B&H and Adorama because you’re likely in violation of tax law. Most states require you to pay you local and state sales taxes on things you buy online, if you simply choose not to pay that tax it’s a you issue, not a local store issue. The difference is that online you’re responsible for the taxes, in a brick-and-mortar I’m required to take it from you at point-of-sale and bear the responsibility of making sure the state gets that tax from you.

    At a one-location “mom and pop” store we work tirelessly to help customers, offer hands-on info and let countless customers fondle our cameras only to buy them online for cheaper. Everybody wants to play with our gear only to buy it online because it’s “cheaper”.

    There really is no real markup. Sure there is a difference between dealer cost and MSRP but nobody sells for MSRP because that’s a suggestion. Everybody sells at “Dealer MAP” (or Minimum Advertised Price). If Sammy’s can advertise for X, we have to sell at X to stay in the market. If we “markup” to MSRP everybody thinks we’re overcharging for trying to make money so we don’t do it. MAP is amazingly low.

    Adorama and their ilk, before the Earthquake, typically sold Nikon and Canon gear for dealer cost or less. We’re not competitive because we want to stay in business.

    This doesn’t matter for the Pros. It matters for the prosumers and entry level folks because I can sell more cameras (DSLRs) than the local Best Buy not because I’m pushing them out of my store but because I know the products and can sell people on them. If you buy your camera and lenses elsewhere I don’t care because I make my money on other gear that the chains don’t carry and that you might want to see in person (bags, et cetera). However if you cut me off I’m simply not going to sell your gear so when the local kid wants to start shooting events or weddings I’m going to sell what I can get and show them. I’m still a Canon dealer so goodbye D3100, hello T3i.

    As for the Gray market nonsense, +1 for the comment that Adorama and B&H are the culprits there. In the dealer agreement Nikon states it’s a violation to sell Gray market gear and yet the major players are the worst offenders. I don’t sell Gray market but I do know where to get them repaired. Try getting Nikon to fix the lens you bought for cheaper at B&H. Whoops, no dice.

    I’m a little bitter as a Nikon shooter and in a store that fought for years to open with Nikon with them constantly losing paperwork and not getting emails or faxes endlessly. We got the letter on Tues and were no longer a dealer by Sat. We are still getting promotional material in the mail. This came out of nowhere and is shoddy support service at best.

  • abchbum

    well,
    i shop at one of the small, “mom and pop” stores, and have since 1990, when i moved to this small town. i have bought both used and new nikon gear from these folks. i still shoot black and white film as well as color film and often have my digital images made into prints at this shop. i encouraged people to frequent the store, because i have found the people their to be honest and willing to help you when there are issues with the cameras, or your methods. i think for me, when i was told about this letter from nikon, from the owners, that i saw in their faces and heard in their voices the feeling of betrayal and hurt that it caused. i dont know what the real reason is that nikon has done this, i am confidant it has to do with $$$$, but even when it is necessary to do things that are going to hurt the people that helped you get to where you are, there is a way to do it with class and then there is this way, just a letter.
    i love nikon gear and have used the equipment for years and years, but i am an older guy and i hope wiser, and i have a lot of respect for “principles”. just a thought.

  • Pierre

    As the number of small Nikon dealers is decreased in a very large way, you will see than Nikon is saving a lot of $$$ by firing (or letting go) most of their sales reps who are no longer needed. Salaries, Health Plans, Paid vacation, Bonuses, Retirement, just to name a few savings along the line.

  • Ant

    Nikon will probably be thinking that they can save money by reducing their reseller base. Shipping larger quantities of product to a smaller number of dealers will be more efficient for them. SOx regulations in the USA make it pretty labour (sorry labor) -intensive to maintain a trading account with someone. Don’t underestimate how much of a pain in the ass SOx has been for big companies. This way they can rationalize, maybe lay off a few people in accounts and sales admin, free up some cash to give to Ashton Kutcher.

    However, if you focus on a smaller number of big dealers, you risk the tail beginning to wag the dog. I feel for the guys running small or local dealerships. They invested a huge amount into the franchise only to have the rug pulled out from under them. It’s generally not good business practice to do this, because you’d be amazed how much people do business with people they like and trust.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/friedtoast/ Fried Toast

    I wish someone would translate this and make every single person in a position of responsibility at Nikon in Tokyo read every single comment here. It doesn’t take too long to visualize how short term savings are going to cause long term problems with sales and loyalty.

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