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Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by Bill Gordon, Nov 13, 2011.
Japanese watchdog may seek levy on Olympus - source | Reuters
The more I think about it, the more I think Olympus is going to come out of this okay. The Japanese already had a tough year, and I think the financial fallout of Olympus would be worst if they were to go under. It'd probably be in the best interest for all the Japanese businesses if they were to stay afloat.
People also said Arthur Andersen was too key a player in its market to go.... not that I'd wish the same fate for Olympus, but this is a pretty big hole in its hull.
As far as I understand, the general consensus is that Olympus actually fully wrote off their hidden losses by 2008, so it's unlikely that the company is going bankrupt.
Isn't 2008 when the "suspicious" fees that Woodford exposed were made? That was probably the last of the 20 years of balancing, and probably an unusually high amount because they wanted to just get this whole thing done and over with.
I don't think anyone outside Olympus can answer this question, but I think this is exactly the case.
Olympus shares have risen 17% today, on the rumor it may avoid delisting only be fined. Good news indeed.
Indeed good news! Product wise, this is a high time for Olympus. They're putting out some of the most competitive products in this field right now, and the consumers are taking notice. The ones who know nothing about this corporate scandal... I would hate so much to see that go away because of some bookkeeping issues.
While I have no desire to be contentious and I do understand why people are cheering for the survival of Olympus, what went on there was very serious, much more than "some bookkeeping issues". Senior management at the company fraudulently represented its financial position to the detriment of the shareholders. Senior managers of the company lost their jobs as a result, as they should have. And while I know little about law, much less in Japan, I'm pretty sure some of these same manager could end up in jail. At least in the U.S. I think it is pretty likely.
I've spent more than 34 years in Corporate America, most of it in financial management positions. From a stewardship standpoint, what went on within Olympus was very wrong on many levels.
Bookkeeping issues are when you misstate a quarter of financial results, not 15 years.
Prince01 is right. While it is good to cheer for Olympus in these hard times, we should also come to terms that even with a healthy balance sheet and good products, the Olympus brand is forever irreparably damaged, and jail is on the way for some.
Any monies devoted to R&D will now be shunted into the legal department, as a way to defend the company against the myriad of shareholder lawsuits on the way.
As I have stated before, the best thing for a Oly m43 user is to hope the camera/imaging division is sold now, so that someone who doesn't have to deal with management and legal problems can have the ability to produce good cameras.
I know you love Olympus Ned, but as it's been pointed out, this is not a small book keeping mistake like losing a few receipts or a rounding error. This is significant financial fraud covering up hundreds of millions of losses over many years, not to mention the loss of all that investor equity..
Olympus shares are up a whopping 44% today so that investor equity may be in recovery mode. And the daring fellow on this forum who bought some Oly shares when they were only $6 last week has made more than 50% on his money!
I also love Olympus...started with the E-10, E-20, E-1,E-3 and now the E-P1,2,3 so I am convinced that it will survive and go on to bigger things. Let us all give them time to sort things out, remember they do have loyal employees and they have already spoken!
I know the accounting fraud that went on at Olympus for years, maybe decades, is extremely serious but why should that prevent us from hoping the company can recover and that the camera division can continue the good work of recent years? There seems to be an underlying feeling with some that it's not enough for the individuals responsible to be investigated and prosecuted, but the whole company should be broken up and sold as some form of retribution. That really would be a kick in the teeth for shareholders who are just starting to see a recovery in their shares. And what about the thousands of Olympus employees worldwide who have had nothing to do with the crimes at the top, should they be punished too?
I think the best thing for the camera division would be to stay part of Olympus and continue on their present path. The sooner the investigation is complete and the finances sorted out so that Olympus can get back to business as usual the better.
While serious, in my mind what Olympus have done is nowhere near as bad as the behaviour of several firms that culminated in the GFC. Wells Fargo for example deliberately engaged in deceptive conduct lending money to folks who could never pay it back and falsified records. They found some folks to blame it all on, and after they were sacked, all they got was a slap on the wrist and an $85million fine. And they weren't the only ones.
In the scheme of things, in the type of world we live in, Olympus should be dealt in a similar way. It would serve it's purpose and it looks like things are heading that way.
Just a point of clarification - the purpose of my post yesterday was simply to highlight the severity of Olympus' actions. Fraud is fraud and the financial world has fewer shades of gray and more black and white. I'm on this forum because I own Olympus equipment and I hope they do survive their current crisis so that we all continue to benefit from further development and commercialization of their photographic products.
That said, trust of shareholders and employees can take decades to build and moments to destroy. No matter how unfortunate, the company is currently at the low ebb on the trust curve and that is related to senior managements fraudulent actions. Let's hope they move forward quickly.
As one last point, I can't/won't address how other companies have been dealt with under similar circumstances. First, no two cases are exactly the same. Second, I don't think the legal processes/systems that deal with these issues are even remotely consistent and and therefore inherently inequitable. Third, perhaps the reason we have as many of these kinds of issues is because the penalties are indeed too light and need to be stiffened - too many slaps on the wrist, not enough good old fashioned butt whippings.
Just my two cents worth.
Olympus Corp management told its staff on Wednesday that it believes it has secured the understanding of its creditors and that it was still in a solid position financially, according to an internal memo obtained by Reuters.
In the memo, management said the company continued to produce steady cash flow and noted that it had 260 billion yen (2.15 billion pounds) in cash as of June, giving it "sufficient funds to continue making necessary investments in the business."
Olympus managers say have understanding of banks-memo | Reuters
I'm sure that must have been a relief for many to receive!
In June the scandal hadn't broken, those numbers are meaningless. 2 billion is a drop in the bucket compared to the shareholder litigation coming. If that is all they have, well, I cannot see them surviving. If he had said 20 billion, maybe, just maybe, they would have enough to weather this storm.
Yet more bad news as the UK Serious Fraud Squad has confirmed that it has launched an investigation - Olympus steps up fight for survival - Telegraph