Fujifilm unveils new mirrorless camera to grab half of Thai market

BANGKOK, NNA - Japan's Fujifilm Corp., one of the major players in Thailand's digital camera market, is launching a new mirrorless camera in a bid to capture a half of the market on the back of growing demand for interchangeable lense gadgets.

Fujifilm (Thailand) Ltd., a sales subsidiary of the Tokyo-based firm, just released the "X-A5" digital mirrorless camera with a price tag of 21,990 baht (about $700), aiming to boost its segment share to 50 percent this year from 34.8 percent last year.

Fujifilm led Thailand's entire digital camera market with a share of 22 percent last year, followed by Sony Corp. and Canon Inc. with a 21.4 percent share each, the firm says, citing data by market research firm GfK.

The digital camera market grew 8 percent from a year earlier to 8.6 billion baht last year despite a drop in volume, along with the same growth rate in the mirrorless camera segment, which accounts for 60 percent of the entire market, according to Fujifilm Thailand.

The local arm is allocating a 100 million baht marketing budget for the new mirrorless model amid expectations that the mirrorless and overall digital camera markets will both grow by 10 percent.

Fujifilm has named members of "BNK 48," a Thai sister group of Japan's all-girl idol group AKB 48, as new brand ambassadors to draw attention notably from selfie-loving Thai females aged 18 to 29.

"Demand for digital mirrorless cameras is growing while that for digital compact cameras is dwindling due to the emergence of smartphones," said Sittiwech Sawedpat, executive senior manager of Fujifilm Thailand's photo and electronic imaging division.

By country, Fujifilm says Thailand is ranked fourth in terms of global digital camera sales after the United States, China and Japan. (NNA/Kyodo)