Leica claims that its S-system project is going ‘extremely well’ but has not clarified whether it will be affected by the reported ending of its ‘strategic partnership’ with Phase One.

A report published by the British Journal of Photography (BJP) suggests that Leica and Phase One, a supplier of digital camera backs and image capture technology, have ‘scrapped’ an alliance announced at last year’s Photokina in Germany.

The deal was expected to see the two firms exchanging technology for development of the S2, the first DSLR in the Leica S-system.

In a statement, issued in response to the BJP article, a Leica UK spokesman today told Amateur Photographer: ‘Being a relatively small company Leica Camera AG has been, and will always be, reliant on close working relationships with key partners. The nature of these relationships will vary over time as different products progress through, from development to maturity.’

Asked if the reported split with Phase One will impact on the S-system project Leica added: ‘The progression of the S-system development is going extremely well, since its preview launch at last year’s Photokina. Internal company preparations are now taking place in key markets such as the UK to ensure the system’s success at the top end of high resolution professional photography.’

Leica UK declined to comment further.

A spokesman for Leica Camera AG, which is based in Germany, said it does not have ‘any additional comments on the subject’.

Phase One had yet to comment at the time of writing.

Last month Phase One announced that it was set to buy the assets of camera back maker Leaf, to form a new company called Leaf Imaging Ltd.

Leaf is credited as the maker of the world’s first digital camera back, in 1992.