"A first step"?toward growing the business of Leica Camera."?
Leica Camera has acquired controlling shares in Sinar, the Switzerland-based producer of digital backs as well as medium- and large-format cameras. The shares were purchased from Jenoptik Laser, which had acquired a majority of shares in Sinar in late 2005.
"Both companies will benefit from synergies in technical collaboration as well as marketing and sales,"? Leica reports. "This is a first step on the strategic path toward growing the business of Leica Camera AG."?
Jenoptik reports that it "will continue working closely together with Sinar in the future"? when it comes to digital camera backs. Sinar and Jenoptik have collaborated in the development, manufacture, and marketing of digital camera backs since the end of the 1990s (the Jenoptik Group marketed digital camera backs under the "Eyelike" name). In addition, Jenoptik already cooperates with Leica in some development projects.
"With the sale of the Sinar shareholding, Jenoptik is taking a further step forward in the process of focusing on core competences," says Alexander von Witzleben of Jenoptik.
Meanwhile, Jenoptik and Leaf--manufacturer of digital backs and part of Kodak"?s Graphic Communications Group--have announced plans for the development of a long-term business and technology relationship in the field of medium-format digital cameras aimed at professional photographers.
Leica Camera is a German company that separated from the Leica Group and became its own publicly held company in 1996. The company produces a range of optical products, including compact cameras, M-System rangefinder cameras, R-system single-lens reflex cameras, professional digital cameras, digital compact cameras (in association with Panasonic), binoculars, and spotting scopes.
Sinar AG, founded in 1879, produces medium- and large-format cameras, both with analog and digital technology. Its US distributor is Sinar Bron Imaging (www.sinarbron.com), based in Edison, NJ.