Cactus has ceased trading – but apparently they didn’t tell anybody for three months

Tips & Techniques

This only seems to be coming out now, which isn’t much of a surprise as the popularity of Cactus triggers and lights has taken a bit of a beating the last few years – what with Godox bursting onto the scene covering everything from entry-level budget speedlights to honking big location strobes. So Cactus has kind of fallen by the wayside.

But Cactus, the company that failed to crowdfund the Cactus RQ250 strobe – a competitor to the Godox AD200 – a couple of years ago has now left the building. According to an email response sent out to one of their customers recently, Cactus actually ceased trading in December 2020, but they just didn’t tell anybody and nobody seemed to really notice.

The failed Cactus QR250 crowdfunding campaign

A Cactus customer reached out to DIYP to share an email they received and let us know about the situation with Cactus. They received the email from Henry Chan, Director of Product Research and Development at Cactus in response to a query about a product. This is what it said…

Dear xxx,

We are sorry to let you know that Cactus has closed its photo equipment business since December 2020. Our website will maintain for a while. What a shame that we cannot serve the community anymore.

Thanks so much for your message. Wish you good luck and stay healthy in the pandemic.

Best wishes,
Henry Chan

If you visit the Cactus website, there is no notification that the company has ceased trading (the “news” hasn’t been updated since the RQ250 failed in 2018), although the customer that contacted us says he was also told that the website will remain up for a little while so that people can download updated firmware for the products they do own. But, there’s no telling how long the website might remain online.

Cactus products do seem to be available on both Amazon and B&H (which seems a bit naughty, given that none of the product listings say the company isn’t around anymore), although there’s no telling how many stocks remain available. And if Cactus has ceased trading, it’s unlikely they’ll be getting any more in. And you almost certainly won’t have a warranty anymore if the company doesn’t exist.

So, if you’ve got Cactus gear, check for new firmware updates and download them now before the opportunity disappears forever.

It’s a shame but as I said, it’s not really surprising. A little over a decade or so when I started working with flash, Cactus were the low budget option, alongside Yongnuo, that many favoured – particularly when it came to flash triggers, even if not the lights themselves. But they haven’t really kept up with the market over the years since then, culminating in an ever-shrinking customer base that they just couldn’t grow.

I know this is something that will sting a little for Sigma shooters, too – especially with the recent fp L announcement – as Cactus were the only 3rd party flash support that Sigma’s had. Hopefully, Godox will step up now and start offering support with a new Sigma version of their XPro and X2T triggers. Lack of decent 3rd party flash support was the only reason I never bought an SD Quattro and it’ll be the only thing stopping me from buying whatever full-frame Foveon they release (assuming that it ever actually happens).

We’ve reached out to Cactus for an official response. We’ll let you know if and when we receive a reply.

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