I'm not talking about gear you buy. I'm talking about investing on the stock market. Many of the companies we as photographers use are public companies. For me, it's become a time to consider investing. What would you buy?
We've got Canon, Nikon, Sony, Adobe, Apple, GoPro, Fujifilm, and Microsoft to name a few. If there's one thing we all know, it's that gear is important. And it's a sizable investment we have to make over the years. We do so crucially, without settling for a lesser product than we can afford at the time.
Do we believe some of these large companies will grow in the future, and if so, can we invest to participate in this growth and have something to look back on one day? I mean, we believe in the brands we buy don't we?
I am not a financial analyst or guide. I've just been following the growth and changes some of these companies have experienced, and I'm quite comfortable to let people know what I've invested in. I've obviously made a wise decision to do so only with money I can afford to lose, and it's not a over night scheme but a long game I'm a part of now.
I'm busy looking at investing. I've only looked at the graphs for each company over the past ten years, and I've listed them below. I believe some of these are destined to grow in the future.
The Companies I'm Investing In
Since the move to the subscription model they're value has risen, and it's not looking to stop. Adobe also has a marketing division, which adds to the growth. As the internet grows, so too do the creative and marketing agencies.
People can say what they want about Apple. It's obviously a contentious issue for some, but, according to their stock performance over the past 10 years, it's not looking bad at all.
Sony is almost dominating the mirrorless camera market, and the two giants of the past, Canon and Nikon, are playing catchup. Sony also supplies sensors to several phone manufacturers, is a maker of a lot of audio visual equipment, has music and movie production enterprises, so it's not just photography. But, for me, it's looking like the growth will continue.
The company that I started a relationship with in the 80s have gone through incredible peaks and troughs, but it's always ended up growing, and they're always focussing on a new need to provide services for. In my books it's a yes.
We all know of this brand as a company that gave us film stock with rich colors and grain. Look at the back of any photo in your printed album and I can bet it's either Kodak or Fujifilm stock. They were of the first to go into the mirrorless market with a camera that gave us the same feeling we got when we used to shoot on film. They've just released the Fujifilm X-T30, and according to the reviews it's a small but powerful camera. The company has repositioned themselves and now stand amongst the big names in cameras, and I believe they will continue to grow for the next ten years.
The Companies That Are Struggling, But, Are Cheap to Buy Now
I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark III and I love the camera for my professional work. It's a powerful beast that has had some hard knocks but stood the test of time. Unfortunately they've had a tough time the past couple of years, and they have quite a diversified portfolio with printers and other optics, it's not doing to well.
I've always been a Canon fanboy, but I must admit that there are several things that the Nikon shooters tend to have that I don't. It's a certain elegance and sophistication. But, just like Canon, Nikon has also struggled over the past 10 years and their value on the stock markets aren't looking too positive. Although the value is higher than it was 10 years ago, I'm hesitant. On the other hand, it's a good time to buy if you think that they will eventually get out of the rut they're currently in.
They still seem like a startup, with massive investments and developments of their technology. It should also be said that we're able to buy the 7th edition of the GoPro Hero action camera. I have one, and I absolutely love it, and I've heard some rumors that they might license their stabilization tech to Canon, which could be beneficial for both companies, but the graph doesn't seem to budge on this. although there's been an increase in value for them the last year, it's been a flat last 7 years for them.
I have to make it clear that I am not a financial expert, and that I don't have the resources or knowledge to advise someone on investing in one company or another. I'm rather showing the current scenario. I want to invest, and I'm sure many have thought about doing the same. I'm going to invest $50 per month, and I will distribute the funds between companies I believe will grow throughout my life. Being diversified is a good idea when it comes to something you essentially cannot control. And there's really no need to have all your eggs in one basket. The future will bring more technologies and more companies on board. Some will go public and give us the opportunity to share in the growth.
Looking at companies like Canon, Nikon, and GoPro makes me feel sad for them and the photography industry as a whole. Many of us have grown up with film cameras given to us by our parents. These cameras came with that brand name on it that we still use today. If we as photographers are not investing in these companies because of the risk involved, what are the investors doing? Have you invested in the companies that make your gear? If so and if I've missed a company worth looking at, please share it in the comments.