Nikon Acquired US Camera Manufacturer RED

Nikon Acquired US Camera Manufacturer RED

Nikon, the Japanese camera-maker, is expanding into the movie-making sphere with the acquisition of RED Digital Cinema as a wholly-owned subsidiary. RED, which is located in Foothill Ranch, California has about 200 employees and is headed by president Jarred Land. The company was founded in 2005 by Jim Jannard. Terms of the acquisition have not been revealed.

The first RED One 4K camera was developed in 2007 and quickly became a favorite of indie filmmakers because of its relatively low cost. RED later offered its V-Raptor system with an 8K sensor, and is also known for its proprietary RAW compression technology. In recent years, RED has provided its equipment to leading cinematographers like Erik Messerschmidt, Robert Richardson, Cesar Charlone, and Jeff Cronenweth, among others. Marques Brownlee also uses RED cameras for his YouTube videos.

Some of the films and television shows shot on RED equipment include include Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 3, Captain Marvel, The Queen’s Gambit, Peaky Blinders, Frozen Planet II, Squid Game, and Mindhunter.

In announcing the deal, Nikon said “RED’s contributions to the film industry have not only earned it an Academy Award but have also made it the camera of choice for numerous Hollywood productions, celebrated by directors and cinematographers worldwide for its commitment to innovation and image quality optimized for the highest levels of filmmaking and video production.

The company said that it would leverage this acquisition “to expand the fast-growing professional digital cinema camera market, building on both companies’ business foundations and networks, promising an exciting future of product development that will continue to push the boundaries of what is possible in film and video production.”

Nikon added that its “expertise in product development, exceptional reliability, and know-how in image processing, as well as optical technology and user interface along with RED’s knowledge in cinema cameras, including unique image compression technology and color science, will enable the development of distinctive products.”

At the same time, RED’s president Jarred Land issued this statement: “In a landmark move, RED Digital Cinema (, LLC), is excited to announce being acquired by Nikon Corporation (Nikon). The agreement with Nikon, reached with RED’s founder Jim Jannard and President Jarred Land, signifies a new era of innovation and excellence in the professional filmmaking sector.”

Interestingly, the two companies had an adversarial relationship recently after RED filed a lawsuit accusing Nikon of infringing on its video compression patents. The case was dismissed in April of 2023.

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