Nikon 2014 Q3 financial results

Nikon released their financial results for the third quarter of the year ending March 2014. They also updated their estimations or the entire year:

Summary for the 3rd quarter of the year ending March 31, 2014


"Although the whole digital camera markets have been shrinking, the profitability has improved every
quarter to reach 11% in Q3 (7.7% in Q1, 9.9% in Q2). The improvements have been achieved by better
product mix of entry class D-SLR cameras and launching new middle/high class D-SLR cameras and

Summary of Estimation for the Year Ending March 31, 2014


"As the camera markets in China and Europe did not reach the estimation, the sales volume forecast
has to be downgraded for digital camera-interchangeable lens type and interchangeable lens. But net
sales forecast is unchanged, considering the favorable foreign exchange rate. Operating income
forecast is also unchanged with an intention to promote further cost reduction measures."

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  • broxibear

    Nikon Asia have a few more AW1 videos out

  • Plug

    I don’t really understand: Nikon praise themselves for an improved product mix. And yet for me, the product mix is deficient and I have been unable to purchase anything Nikon for two years now? The product mix for me is wrong. No D300s replacement so no purchase, and crucially, no purchase of several upgrade lenses etc. I’m baffled as they do not seem to want my custom. In the meantime I shall continue to enjoy using my current system but as a relatively high value customer will patiently wait fo what I want.

    • broxibear

      Hi Plug,
      You’ve got to remember it’s their own finacial results, they’re not going to criticize themselves in their own report. All these types of reports are sugar coated, dipped in honey and sprinkled with aspartame.

      • Plug

        Yes, of course, you are right. But my frustration is tangible and I must not allow it to interfere with my picture taking with what is excellent equipment. Still…..

        • Ceasar Sharper

          Well I bought the D800 but would buy a D400 based on a modified Sony A99 sensor and an Exceed 4 processor. I want to buy a new camera before I retire and I hope it will be a D400 because I have a long wait for a D5 🙂

        • Darkness

          The replacement for the D300 has been any of the following: D700, D600, D610, or even D800. If you really love tiny viewfinders and no DOF then the D7000 or D7100 is for you. Not so complicated, that is IF you have any money for a new camera at ALL.

    • D800-fan

      Are you really the target market for Nikon? My guess is that you aren’t.

      As for myself, In the past year I’ve bought a D7100 as a second body to my D800, a 70-200 F4 lens (A lot lighter than the F2.8) and the 14-24 lens in the past year. The last one was to replace an old 17-35 F2.8 that got stolen in Amman. (Thanks to a ‘new for old’ insurance policy)

      For 2014, I probably won’t buy anything although I’d love to get a 200-400 VRII. I’ll probably be in the market for a D800 replacement is 2015.
      The D400 is IMHO, one wish that won’t get fulfilled anytime soon mind you, I’d like to have 8fps in a body but it is not a must have requirement at the moment.

      • Plug

        I think you are correct. But it seems to me that it is not a perfect situation for Nikon if they cannot persuade existing potentially high spending customers to continue that spending. It is all very well to be trying to gain new customers, but looking after the current base surely has some importance too. I am very loyal and have been a Nikon customer for thirty+ years spending multi thousands. I feel that for the first time they are now trying to take me for granted.

        • mikeswitz

          Have you noticed that no one has a D400 equivalent. No one. There must be a reason. I’m sure both canon and nikon have done market research and have both come to the same conclusion. Nikon declared the 7000 as “the flagship of the DX line. ” Everyone dismissed it, but I think they meant it. Canon has been rumored to release an equivelant at least twice a year for the last three. Nothing. Canikon doesn’t owe anyone a new model if they don’t think its going to be profitable. Not even faithful customers who have spent lots of money on their products in the past.

          • Plug

            Yes, there must be a reason and i am sure that they research continuously. I accept that they wish to write off the spending of the likes of me. I own: D800, D300s, 24-70f2.8, 80-200f2.8, 300f2.8, TC14, TC20 plus lots of older, mainly primes. I want to replace the D300s because of the flexibility of reach that then manifests. I do some wildlife/bird photography, often in Africa where robustness is essential to protect from conditions. My current gear is very heavy and cumbersome in those conditions. Should a suitable high end DX camera appear then I would purchase with it the newer 80-200f4 and the expected 300f4 VR in order to reduce weight, enough to add a 500f4 and leave the 300f2.8 at home.. And I am mulling replacing the older wideangle primes for the D800. I am lucky that I can afford to do these things but this is a great deal of spending that will not happen without the key central element. Nikon used to cater for the real enthusiast as well as entry level and pro level. That this middle ground is being neglected is clear. Look at the gaps in the lineup. Auto extension tubes etc, etc. (Thom Hogan has recently published an extensive list). I am not interested in DX wideangle primes, as I have a D800, and telephotos should be FX as DX teles would hardly differ in bulk, but an attempt to push me to solely FX is irritating, Clearly many people would appreciate DX primes and a policy of telling customers what they want is dangerous.

            • Name

              “attempt to push you to only FX is irritating” r u serious?

          • Captain Megaton

            I knew the D400 was dead and buried the moment I learnt the D7000 had an Ai coupling ring. Anyone who thought otherwise was just dreaming.

          • Thom Hogan

            Depends upon what you mean by D400 equivalent. I would say it appears you haven’t handled an Olympus E-M1 or Fujifilm X-T1, for example, which are getting awful close, and both have better lens sets than Nikon has for a D300s (other than >135mm equivalent).

            On the trip I’m about to take off on, I’m going to have to choose between D7100, E-M1, and X-T1. Guess which one is the least likely to go at the moment? Personally, I find it disturbing that the progression of cameras I used for years (N90s, F100, D100, D200, D300) seems to have come to an end. Yes, the D800 is what I chose to move to after the D300, but I’m now grappling with a bigger, heavier body that isn’t always the right set of compromises for what I set off to do. THAT’S the problem that a lot of Nikon serious users are having.

            The D300 was perhaps the most well rounded camera of its time. Which Nikon would you say that is today? Basically your choices are D7100, D610, Df, and D800, all of which take you into compromises in different directions.

            • mikeswitz

              You’re right, I haven’t handled the E-M1 or the X-T1 but I own the X-Pro 1, most of the XF primes and the 55-200mm. I also have the D800 and sold my D300 and all my DX lenses. Between my Nikon and Fuji systems I think I have covered all the types of photography I am likely to be involved with in the near future. That said, neither is really a D400 equivalent. I loved my D300 but I love the D800 more. The Fuji is great for PJ and street but not so much with long lenses. I think both systems have better IQ than the D300 and I expect Fuji would match a mythical D400. I guess my point to Plug was that if Nikon thought it could make a substantial profit from an updated D300 they would do it. I don’t think they ignoring a certain set of customers, they just don’t see the holes in their line-up that you do. They must have done a market analysis and come to the conclusion that DX is not the future, at least as far as pro body is concerned. I guess I’m just not as pessimistic about the the state of the prosumer/enthusiast market as you are, although it is curious why there are so few DX primes being developed.

            • Thom Hogan

              Right. The X-Pro1 is probably the most awkward of the X bodies Fujiifilm has produced, and not at all like the D300 for shooting. The X-T1 is a different beast, and much more a spontaneous camera ala the D300 (though we still don’t have a decent telephoto solution for the X bodies).

              As for Nikon, they know they’d make significant money off a D400. Had they done that in a timely fashion, it would have been another best seller for them and reinvigorated the Dxxx sales. Nikon, however, chose to go another way, trying to entice higher end DX users into FX bodies. Unfortunately, they didn’t seem to understand everyone who was using a D300 and why. For some, moving to FX was okay (though expensive). For others, it gained them nothing and actually set them back a bit from where they expected to be (and was expensive).

              Nikon’s strategy changed from line evolvement to line extension, basically, and all in the FX realm. The D600, D800, and Df are new cameras, not upgraded cameras.

              I can say that Nikon probably has gotten more feedback about the missing D300 update than any other thing they have or haven’t done recently. They know there’s still market there. Why they wish to continue to ignore that is a really good question. Either they see something like a pivot point in the future, or they’ve degenerated into decision by committee and are letting internal politics decide products. I’d bet the latter, especially after hearing the Df development stories.

              Frankly, I’d say that Nikon is showing signs of low self esteem. Had they had strong self esteem, they would have taken the D300 win and doubled down. They would have cut the mirrorless systems off at the knees by taking some weight and size out and building out the lens set.

              Simply put, Nikon has a different agenda that most of its prosumer/pro base. The problem is that they’re slowly losing the loyalty of that base, and it was highly loyal dating back to the N8008.

            • eddie

              what about the sony A7R?

            • Thom Hogan

              The A7r is a D800 competitor, not a D300 competitor. The A6000 and A77II are what Sony has chosen to try to take market share away from Canon/Nikon in that crop-sensor performance camera category.

          • F_Mounts_X

            Pretty sure the X-T1 comes pretty close to a D400 replacement, well minus the lens mount, and mirrorless part. Specs wise, it comes the closest to date.

            • mikeswitz

              I have the X-Pro 1 and a gaggle(?) of lenses. I love the system and use it all the time for certain jobs. I expect the X-T1 will be even better, but it is not a D300 replacement equivalent. In fact I sold my D300 not long after acquiring the Fuji system. It’s the mirrorless part that is the difference. For birders and sports photographers there is no D400 and I’m pretty sure there never will be, but I have been wrong in the past (maybe once). At least not until Canikon are convinced they will make a profit selling them.

      • Andrzej Lukowiec

        If there will be a D800 replacement in 2015… Or if there will be a D800 replacement ever. Who knows… 😉

      • Thom Hogan

        > Are you really the target market for Nikon?

        This is the essence of Nikon’s future. The target market for Nikon appears to compacts through consumer DX DSLRs. Every now and then they put out something higher than that which, except for the very highest pro camera, isn’t actually an update of something, but an attempt to find new users in a wedge between existing users. Instead of a D300 and D700 update we got D610, Df, D800, for instance. Not that those are necessarily bad cameras, but the problem all the camera companies are starting to have is that the existing prosumer+ users don’t feel like their problems are being solved or addressed.

        The same thing is happening in lenses, where the target seems to be mostly kit lenses through something like the 80-400mm, with some f/1.8 primes thrown in. Where we do get something above that, it’s the 800mm and the odd 58mm f/1.4, again, fishing the cracks in the current lineup rather than fixing the current lineup with solutions to current users problems (no VR in the 24-70mm, for example).

        This has to be strategic on Nikon’s part. Okay, but does that strategy buy them enough new users to make up for upsetting the ones that had been recommending their products to others? My guess is that unless Nikon fixes the D7100 and up line up, and ditto with the higher end lenses, the answer is no. The E-M1, X-T1, and A7/A7r are starting to attract the attention, if not the buying, of that core prosumer group.

        I wrote quite a few years ago that Nikon needed to split its camera group into consumer and prosumer/pro. The needs of those two groups are different. The latter group has been one of the reasons (via word of mouth) that the former group has been growing. More and more it appears to me that Nikon is willing to give that up, at least to some degree, and just use conventional marketing push to sell to consumers (ads, rebates, etc.). I would say that they’re not very well suited to being that type of company. Had Nikon made the kind of mistakes they did with the D600 and D800 on, say, the D5100 and D7100, they’d be in deep trouble right now.

        • SPfan

          Despite being stingy just about everywhere else, one thing Nikon does really well is endorsements and product placements. Even if the movie is made by Sony, if there’s a photographer in it, he/she will have a Nikon (although Leica seems to be making inroads.)

    • D600blows

      All I know is they’d have had my money last year had the D600 been a non-defective camera. And I’m still holding out for them to price the non-defective version (D610) fairly relative to the current market, which means coming more in line with the 6D and a7.

      So in summary, DX pro-style users are unhappy (for lack of a D400), FX users who want an entry-level camera aren’t happy (because of the botched/useless D600)… seems Nikon only cares about the low-end and very high-end these days.

    • neversink

      I think you have it wrong. Those that want a D400, whatever that is supposed to be, are truly in the minority, although they tend to scream and yell and whine a lot on this site. If Nikon were to make a D400 for you, the chances are that they would lose money on it, because there wouldn’t be enough buyers. And you would all be yelling and screaming and whining about what a lousy camera the D400 was. YAWN!!!!!

  • Steve C

    What Nikon should have released is a direct competitor to the Canon 5D MKiii.
    Nothing wrong with D800, but the large files put most off. The D600/10 is very good, but in a prosumer body.
    The 5D MKiii is a very good all rounder and Nikon do not have a model that competes with it directly, not a new model anyway.

    • Joel

      I really have trouble understanding this argument. The first thing I did after dropping $3k on a D800 was to spend another $1k on PC upgrades and storage to cope with the increased file size. You’re prepared to spend a great deal of money on the camera, but not a fraction extra for hardware to process the images that come from it?

      • Steve C

        I very nearly purchased a D800 last year, just changing my mind last minute. Since then though I’ve dropped over $1k on a new PC & storage. Still not sure if I need all that res though but I did manage to bag a refurb D600 with extras at an offer I could not refuse. Very happy with it, but it would be nicer in a pro body.

        • Captain Megaton

          The D600 is a slightly faster camera as a result of the reduced pixel count, but the PC hardware required to cope with 36MP isn’t much difference than what is needed to deal with 24MP.

          • Gareth

            I went from a D300s to a D800. The storage and processing requirements are not that different. I have a 17″ MacBook Pro from 2010. It’s fine. I remember reading the same arguments when cameras went from 6mp to 12mp to 24mp.

      • Darkness

        AND, you can enjoy that investment for years to come.

      • Michiel953

        I spent EUR 150 on a RAM upgrade, from 4 to 12 (Thinkpad W510). That solved any problem I might have had with D800 files. But then, I’m not a pro.

  • RMJ

    Imagine how much money they would have made with D400…

    They are so frickin stupid…

    • Duarte Castelo Branco

      it would have to cost the same as the d610, to protect de d7100. and use a body similar to the d800. Also, better shutter and af systems than the d610 and more magnesium. For the same price, 75% of the people would choose a mid ranged body with an Fx sensor than a camera with a pro body and a sensor maybe marginally better than the one in the d3300

      • RMJ

        Most people don’t care if it’s marginally better than D3300 or even worse. What they do care are the usability and the features. And for those two things I’d be glad to pay even more than D610.

      • Thom Hogan

        I think this is missing the point. The D610 is consumer grade and design, at the bottom of the FX lineup. A D400 would be pro grade and design, at the top of the DX lineup. Those two things can live at the same price point just fine.

        Think about what a D300 user gains and loses by upgrading to a D610.

        Gains: more pixels, better low light, better DR (which they also gain with a D7100, by the way)
        Losses: body integrity/controls, size, pro connectors, etc.

    • Naval Gunfire

      None of the camera manufacturers seem to want to release a semi-pro cropped sensor body at the minute. The Canon 7D replacement has been rumoured for the past couple of years but hasn’t materialised just like the D300s replacement. What is stopping both companies from updating what are fairly popular product lines?

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