What is Pentax? - Japanese Camera and Lens Maker


Pentax Logo

Pentax is a Japanese multinational company which manufactures and do holds license for manufacturing optical products and certain optical lenses which are used in wide range of applications.


Pentax is founded by Kumao Kajiwara in November 1919. The Japanese name of the Pentax is spelled as "Pentakkusu". In the initial stage of the organization Pentax is founded as Asahi Kogaku Kaisha. Kumao started manufacturing and developing spectacle lenses in his shop at Toshima suburb of Tokyo, Japan.

With the manufacturing of the new product, Kumao changed the name to Asahi Optical Co., Ltd. Just like all the camera manufactures like Nikon and Canon, Pentax started developing optical solutions for military applications as well during the world war 2 time period.

Pentax gained much interest from the regional photographers and photo journalists during the Korean war period.

Asahi Optical Co., Ltd introduced their camera SLR camera in 1952 which used 35mm film and named it as Pentax by a brand name which was owned by East German VEB Zeiss Ikon. Asahi Optical Company acquired Pentax in 1957.

Pentax started merger with Hoya Corporation in December 2006 and changed it's name to Hoya Pentax HD Corporation. By the merge of the Hoya Corporation, Hoya's aim was to strengthen the medical product line of Hoya Corporation with more endoscopes, intraocular lenses, surgical loupes, bio-compatible ceramics and etc... Hoya offered to acquire 90.59% of Pentax and Pentax accepted the offer and got merged with 31st of March 2008.

Hoya Corporation stated of selling their shares of Pentax to a copier and printer maker named Ricoh in 1st of July 2011. On 29th of July 2011, Hoya transferred shares to Ricoh and Ricoh formed Pentax Imaging Corporation. in 1st of October 2011, Ricoh acquired the remained shares of Pentax Imaging Corporation and formed Pentax Ricoh Imaging Company Ltd and renamed the business to Ricoh Imaging Company n 1st of August 2013 by keeping the brand name Pentax as is.


Product line of Pentax is solely focused on manufacturing camera and optical products.
  • Pentax DSLR Camera
  • Pentax Binoculars
  • Pentax Action Cameras
  • Pentax Compact Cameras
  • Pentax 360 Cameras
  • Pentax Telescopes
  • Pentax Mirrorless Cameras
  • Pentax Camera Lenses