GfK Asia: Digital Camera Industry bounces back


Following the lackluster performance of the digital camera industry in 2009 where overall flat growth was registered over the previous year across nine markets in Asia, the industry managed an impressive comeback in the next 12 months to achieve 20 and 17 percent growth respectively in value and units.

According to GfK Asia’s retail audit findings for digital camera, the nine markets of Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and the Philippines achieved strong double digit growths in the range of 13 to 39 percent in value, while unit growth saw 9 to 39 percent. Overall, more than 8.76 million units of cameras worth nearly USD3 billion were sold across these markets last year.

“The digital camera industry has indeed been revived in 2010 and this was especially apparent inmarkets such as Thailand and Korea, where 2009 value sales dipped substantially by 25 and 15 percent from the previous year,” commented Ms. Jasmine Lim, Regional Account Director for GfK Asia.

While Hong Kong and Korea’s combined digital camera sales of USD1.35 billion maintained their position as the two biggest markets across the nine countries, it is the developing markets of Philippines, Indonesia and Vietnam that are displaying huge growth potential. Consumers here snapped up 39, 28, and 24 percent more units of digital cameras here compared to 2009.

Compact cameras with fixed lens continue to be most popular among consumers, with four in every five (84%) camera units sold being one. GfK findings for 2010 reveal that half of the total volume sold for compact cameras with fixed lens retailed at USD200 or less, making it the most affordable type of digital camera in the market.

“One noteworthy trend we are seeing is the increasing demand for the up and coming digital compact cameras with changeable lens, also known as mirrorless cameras,” highlighted Ms. Lim. “The gradual hike in market share of these cameras over the last twelve months indicates the increasing acceptance level across the countries—a clear sign also that consumers are willing to pay a higher price for this recently launched compact system cameras.”

Sales for mirrorless cameras have generally been picking up consistently over the four quarters of 2010, but they are notably more popular in Hong Kong, Korea and Taiwan. Mirrorless cameras in these three markets have been showing increasing uptake of the market value share, closing the year hitting 10 to 13 percent by the last quarter of the year.