Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. and Olympus Corp. announced an agreement to jointly develop digital camera technologies in a move that could help them weather intense market competition.
The alliance comes as Olympus and other digital camera makers struggle to make money in the U.S. $24-billion market. Hurdles include sliding prices, slowing growth, and very short product lifecycles, which have led to a sharp rise in development costs.
Olympus, said to be the world's third-largest vendor of digital cameras after Sony Corp. and Canon Inc., expects its camera division to show an 18 billion yen (approx. U.S. $175.8 million) loss this business year as it disposes of excessive inventory and copes with steep price falls.
Matsushita is still a relatively small player in digital cameras, but it has been gaining traction thanks to strong sales of recently launched compact models featuring image stabilization technology that compensates for hand shake. (Reuters)
to Daily News