Rumor: Is Ventizz Capital Planning to Pull the Plug on Hasselblad?


In mid-2011, Hasselblad was acquired by the private equity firm Ventizz Capital Fund IV, but rumors are swirling that the fund might be getting ready to ditch their investment.

The rumor comes to us via Photo Rumors, and isn’t entirely out of left field. Late last year, the company quietly replaced its CEO Dr Larry Hansen — the man responsible for the Sony partnership — and PR says the Italy-based design center opened by Hasselblad less than two years ago “is now supposedly closed.”


For our part, we’re not sure what to think of this. When former COO Ian Rawcliffe took over for Hansen at the end of last year, Ventizz published a very positive press release, claiming that the Lunar and Stellar that many a photography publication enjoys making fun of had “generated very positive market feedback [and] high sales.”

The release also reminded readers that Hassy had opened up its first ever retail store in Tokyo in September, claiming that, “the past months underline that Hasselblad is making headway in implementing its structured expansion process.”

None of this smacks of a company in trouble, but of course, what a company and its parent company tell the press/public can be as far detached from reality as a braggy Facebook status update.


In the end, all we can do is load up on the salt and wait to see if these rumors hold any real weight. Well, that and some good old fashioned speculation, which you’re welcome to do in the comments down below.

(via Photo Rumors)

  • jens-dd

    was a stupid idea anyway….

  • Emperience

    I’m curious of the outcome. I gotta wait and be patient.

  • Chang He

    They should never have killed the V system.

  • anonymous322

    That would be sad, since I just bought my first Hassy. Unfortunately for Hasselblad,it’s a 24 year old 500cm. Lovely camera, regardless.

  • John Doe

    this doesn’t surprise me. majority of their cameras are catered for the elite/pro who can spend a lot of $. undeniably, their cameras are one of the top but if you can’t win people on the enthusiast/consumer-level, it’s hard to make it especially against brands such as Canon, Nikon, Sony, Fujifilm & etc who, not only focus on their top-of-the-line cameras but also their much cheaper offerings.

  • David Liang

    I wonder if they spread the rumors as a fishing tactic. They might be doing “ok” but being a VC if there’s no signs of value increase, it’d be smart of them to start looking for a way out. By spreading a rumor like this they might be seeing if potential buyers start contacting them. Phase One is pretty strong and could potentially monopolize the market if they bought them. If Sony was inclined to get into the MF arena they certainly have a history of buying established companies and integrating them. Or maybe Canon, they probably have the largest bankroll and have been rumored to want in on the MF game.

  • David Liang

    Beautiful machines. I had a 503cx and currently have a 500c fully restored by a hasselblad technician.

  • Jack David

    Apple your move

  • knoxcat6

    The Hasselblad is the jewel in the navel of photography. Film is making a comback and the Hassy should bed there welcoming it with open arms. Film still rocks!!!!!

  • knoxcat6

    The Hasselblad is really not much more expensive than a good 35mm SLR.

  • tttulio

    You mean those pimped out Sonys are not selling?

  • Aezreth

    Same here, bought a NOS 501cm the other year and have enjoyed the heck out of it. Never lusted for the H-cam though.

  • RossH

    Last time I checked the medium H5D was selling in the 30k-50k range… compared to the D4S at 6500 that seems to be quite a bit more money.

  • Chang He

    Likewise, though I picked up a 501c. I love it, and if Hasselblad went back to that system and released an affordable back a la Pentax and the 645D, I’d sell every other camera I own to pick it up if necessary. $40,000 is a bit high though.

  • Gabriele Correddu

    How unexpected!

  • Andrew


  • Jack David

    Apple buy everything!

  • Display_Name

    I could save Hassy with 1 product. Bring out a digital 500C Style camera with a last gen medium format sensor with autofocus lens at 35, 50, 100mm starting at $3000 to $4000 for a lens and body. Thats 4 products. Watch the waiting list begin.

  • Sum_it

    As time goes by, medium format will be cheaper and more efficient. Instead of trying to be a leader in that movement, they’re focusing on crappy re-branding of sony cameras.

    Hassie needs to be able to compete with new competitors like the Pentax 645z. I get the feeling that hassie thinks too highly of itself to compete in the changing landscape.

  • Chang He

    They don’t even need autofocus. Or new lenses, Zeiss can handle that. Just an affordable back with 6×6 resolution that mates with the V-system. And yes, they should start making a 500c style body again.

  • Korios

    Your numbers must be wrong..

  • Korios

    The outrageously priced redesinged Sonys surely look like it was a bad idea now.

  • Adam Cross

    Appleblad? iHassy? :’)