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Interview with Sigma CEO Kazuto Yamaki

mobile01 posted a video (in English) with an interesting interview with Kazuto Yamaki, CEO of Sigma. Our friends at Mirrorless Rumors not only spotted the interview but they did also a great work to sum it up for us.

1) Company philosphy:
We’re still a private company, not a listed company. Epically we are still family owned. So we don’t need to maximized turnover, sells and profits. Public company have to do that to keep their stock price high. But in our case, our goal is just to continue the business and protect the employees. And that is very important. So we gave up to grow rapidly. We decided to stay in Japan, and to explore what can be done here. And that’s one reason why we change our main business form volume zone to mid-high end product.

2) The best selling lenses (in volume) are:
1. 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 DC MACRO OS
2. 17-50mm f/2.8 EX DC OS HSM
3. 70-300mm f/4-5.6 DG MACRO

3) The lenses creating more “value” (I guess he means earnings) are:
1. Contemporary/Sports 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM
2.  35mm f/1.4 DG HSM ART
3.  50mm f/1.4 DG HSM ART

4) DP camera sales:
dp0 sells more than our expectation. So I’m happy! dp2 is the highest by far. Over 50% than other three models. 

5) In a recent Mobile01 poll the users biggest wish was for Sigma to make FE lenses:
He recognizes that he gets the same request from other countries (Editor’s note: Mobile01 is located in Taiwan). And he adds later that “Everything is possible” (when asked if he would make Sony FE lenses)

6) About Sony and Foveon:
To us, it is very clear that Sony will be the major player in the photo industry. Because they have sensor technology. In order to differentiate the products. the sensor and lens are the most important. Other things can be shared by other companies. I think in the photo industry who has a good technology of making good sensor and lens could survive. That is why we acquired the Foveon company and try to retain the technology to us. ”

7) About Taiwan market:
Taiwan’s market respond to new products very quickly. Way faster than USA, China, even Japan. Taiwan is one have quickest response country in the world. Once we release a new product, Taiwanese will jump into new product or technology. And also they care about the quality very much, even more than price. I think it’s a very sophisticated market. ”

8) Why not make a medium format Foveon camera?
“One of my dream is to make our camera to produce such high quality image. Medium format is my personal interest. But so far we have not work on it. First of all, In order to make a medium format camera, we need to re-develop a whole series from the beginning. We have to develop the sensor, camera body, lens…etc. It’s a very long procedure. And unfortunately, the market size of the medium format look quite small, even for Sigma. So that’s why we did not enter the market.

[via mobile01 via Mirrorless Rumors]
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