This German microstock/midstock agency (English language, but you'll find most of the forum discussion in German) recently entered into an agreement with agefotostock to allow a large part of their 1,000,000+ image collection to be distributed through easyfotostock (part of agefotostock)
Panther distribute their images through a worldwide distribution network of 94 partner agencies in "over 36 countries around the globe". They have recently introduced new lower priced web licenses, with an option for the photographer to retain their original higher rate; they provide a separate, optional licensing model for merchandise use.
Euro pricing, and regular changes to the pricing policy as Panther try to find their place in the marketplace. Pricing was midstock but there was an 85% reduction in Nov 09. Prices still somewhat higher than the big 5 microstock agencies at approx 12 US dollars for our standard comparison image with web sized images for online use starting at 1.80 (euros) + VAT. Photographer earnings for merchandise (posters, postcards, canvas prints etc) are a lot fairer than most other microstock sites, sell something like a canvas print license and you will take your commission from a price tag of 250 euros.
License terms are clearly explained and organised more like a traditional stock agency than microstock. Along with the traditional and optional web licenses panther have additional special options for allowing printing of posters and fine art prints etc. (through some of their partner sites including posterjack.com and fineartprint.net). To me this sounds like an attractive proposition, most microstock sites do not make good sales of fine art images such as landscapes and abstracts. I have not tested panther media with such image types yet, but having a microstock site which accepts and redistributes such images for a fairer license fee than microstock alone sounds like a great idea.
Contributors earn a loyalty bonus of up to 10% depending on the number of images uploaded, starting at an additional 1% for 250 images, 3% for 1000, and 10% for 10,000 images (at 1% intervals between), unlike some other agencies it's quite reasonable for a full time microstock contributor to be able to achieve the 10% bonus hence earning 40% commission on non-exclusive images and 60% on web images and exclusives (by exclusive I mean images not sold for a lower price elsewhere).
Slightly more complex upload procedure with selection buttons for various details such as numbers of people, digital manipulation and trademarked items, emotions, and editorial images - the process is not unlike that at a macrostock site.
"More than 40.000 photographers contribute to the stock images, growing by more than 1,500 images daily. PantherMedia was the first company to offer images at budget prices (midstock) ranging from 5 to 80 euros. Panthermedia.net is a project of the PantherMedia GmbH, with headquarters in Munich, Germany. Robert Walters and Peter Ammel founded the company in October 2004."
Quite reasonable earnings at panthermedia with 220 or so accepted images, so a recommendation to upload. Sales for me are not huge, what is encouraging is that the few sales that have been made were of high value 5 to 14+ Euros. A bit of an experiment this one with some hope of sales through redistribution. I will post a more detailed report as I gather more information on this site.
Note: the estimated value of images on panthermedia is very much 'estimated': their front page lists the total of images they have available syndicated from other providers (currently 13 million)
Reaching payout levels in less than a year is a lot more encouraging than many of the sites I'm reviewing.
For more details see the panthermedia website
Panther media offer 13 million images for sale, approx 10 million are distributed from other agencies, the listing of 3 million below is a very rough estimate of their actual image collection size - i.e. that which has been uploaded by photographers directly to panther (actual value possibly smaller?)