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Digital camera sales pick up

Things are looking up for the Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) market in India. DSLR sales have picked up on the back of dropping prices, newer models, and enhanced consumer engagement, reports Rachit Vats.

business Updated: Nov 29, 2009 20:08 IST
Rachit Vats

Things are looking up for the Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) market in India. DSLR sales have picked up on the back of dropping prices, newer models, and enhanced consumer engagement. As the Camera companies find newer ways to engage professional and the first time DSLR buyers, the sales have jumped up by 30 per cent in the first three quarters in 2009 compared to the same period last year.

Canon’s DSLR share has crossed 60 per cent while Nikon is expecting to tap at least 40-45 per cent market share by the end of 2009. Explains Shiladitya Sarkar, senior manager, New Peripherals and Emerging Technology Products Practice, IDC India, “In the DSLR segment there is a rat race between Canon and Nikon. While the penetration in this segment is still very low the sales have picked up. There has been a 30 per cent jump in the DSLR sales compared to last year. The sales will further pick up with further drop in prices.”

According to Alok Bharadwaj, senior vice president, Canon India, “There is marked change in consumer behavior like you mentioned and the DSLR business for Canon is growing at 60 per cent per annum. An entry-level DSLR camera complete with body and kit can be bought for as low as Rs 26,000.”

At present the point and shoot camera segment is a Rs 1,000 crore market with 12 lakh units being sold on an annual basis. The still nascent DSLR segment on the other hand is now a Rs 200 crore market at 20,000 DSLR units annually.

Nikon India Private Limited, a 100 per cent subsidiary of Nikon Corporation, which entered India in 2007, has done well in the segment. The company expects to tap at least 40-45 per cent of the DSLR market by the year-end. In October this year the company used in-film placement (Wake Up Sid) to promote Nikon and DSLR. Hiroshi Takashina, divisional general manager, Nikon, said, “In 2007 we sold 4,000 units while in 2008 we doubled and sold nearly 8,000 DSLR units. A lot of DSLR sale is coming from beginners.”

Canon is extensively working on building a photography community and trying to rope in buyers through seminars, workshops and photography tour. So far it has added 10,000 members to the community.