Not Canon or Nikon-related, but still interesting industry news is that Hoya is selling Pentax Imaging Systems to Ricoh. I understand that this move was not unexpected. Here is the press release:
NOTICE OF SALE OF THE PENTAX IMAGING SYSTEMS BUSINESS
HOYA Corporation (“HOYA”) and Ricoh Company, Ltd. (“Ricoh”) hereby announce that pursuant to decisions by the President and CEO of HOYA and Representative Director of Ricoh, respectively, HOYA and Ricoh have executed an agreement as of today to transfer HOYA’s PENTAX Imaging Systems Business (the business of developing, manufacturing and selling optical instruments such as digital cameras and replacement lenses, digital camera accessories, security camera-related products, and binoculars) (the “PENTAX Imaging Systems Business”) to Ricoh. HOYA will effectuate this transfer by incorporating a new corporation (“NewCo”), cause NewCo to succeed the PENTAX Imaging Systems Business by way of a corporate split (kyushu bunkatsu) (the “Corporate Split”), and transfer all shares of NewCo to Ricoh (such split and transfer shall be referred to as the “Split/Transfer”) as of October 1, 2011 (Estimated).
Prior to the Split/Transfer, HOYA intends to transfer its interests in PENTAX VN CO., Ltd., an overseas subsidiary of HOYA in relation to the PENTAX Imaging Systems Business, to NewCo.
Please note, that since the Corporate Split is a simplified corporate split (kan-i kyushu bunkatsu), disclosure items/content have been partially abbreviated.
Further, HOYA will continue to develop its businesses assigned from PENTAX Corporation which was merged (kyushu gappei) into HOYA on March 31, 2008 other than the PENTAX Imaging Systems Business, such as its businesses regarding digital camera modules, DVD pickup lenses, endoscopes, artificial bones, and voice synthesis.
HOYA merged (kyushu gappei) with PENTAX Corporation on March 31, 2008, and has developed the PENTAX Imaging Systems Business assigned from PENTAX Corporation until now. As part of selecting and focusing its management resources, HOYA has decided to cause NewCo to succeed the PENTAX Imaging Systems Business via the Corporate Split, transfer the business and shares, etc. of HOYA’s Imaging Systems business subsidiary to NewCo via a business transfer and share/interests transfer, and thereafter, transfer all shares of NewCo to Ricoh.
Ricoh’s core business is office solutions focusing on MFPs, Ricoh has also introduced many cameras to the market since its inception in 1936. Ricoh was one of the first manufacturers to launch digital cameras in 1995 and Ricoh’s current high-end compact digital cameras are well regarded in the industry.
Now Ricoh aims to establish a consumer business. As a first step to achieve this goal, Ricoh strengthens its camera businesses. Ricoh takes it as an indispensable initiative to obtain the small and lightweight interchangeable lens camera technology, lens technology and sales channels held by the Pentax Imaging Systems Division to pave the way for further advancement and innovations in the digital camera market.
Through this acquisition, Ricoh plans to 1) enhance its digital camera businesses (especially the interchangeable lens camera market which is expected to grow), 2) create value-added businesses for taken photographs (creation and development of value-added services that encourage seeing, storing and refinishing photographs and utilize photographs as communication tools), and 3) expand to other fields (study of entry into the image archiving business using medium-format digital cameras and enhancement of security-related products)
OPEN LETTER FROM HOYA TO VALUED PENTAX CUSTOMERS AND PARTNERS
July 1, 2011
Dear Valued PENTAX Customers and Partners,
We would like to hereby inform you that we, HOYA Corporation, have made an agreement regarding the business transfer of our PENTAX Imaging System Business to RICOH Corporation today, July 1, 2011.
The effective date of the business transfer is set for October 1, 2011. The business areas to be transferred as PENTAX Imaging System Business are digital cameras, interchangeable lenses, digital camera accessories, binoculars and security-related products, including R&D, design, manufacturing and sales for those product categories.
PENTAX Imaging system business will be succeeded by a newly established company scheduled on October 1, 2011, and then RICOH Corporation will acquire 100% of its stock right after the establishment.
No operational changes of PENTAX Imaging System Business are anticipated for the time being by making this agreement. All employees will be transferred to the new company accordingly. Also, all current products will continue to be sold with the PENTAX brand name under current operations.
PENTAX, under the guidance of RICOH, will continue with our best effort to grow and evolve our business and partnerships and deliver quality products and services designed for a high level of customer satisfaction.
Again, we appreciate your continued support of PENTAX.
Thank you very much.
PENTAX Imaging Systems Division
Posted: 7/1/2011 3:00:08 PM CT Posted By: Bryan