Press Release from Olympus about the finalized deal with JIP

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Is this something that we can see on Instagram or was this a private message.
Can see on their post, not a PM

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retiredfromlife

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Why do you doubt they will have the ability to manufacture cameras and lenses? They have kept all R&D and the factory in Vietnam that does exactly that.
Poorly writen on my part, I was expressing my concern that they would need that facility. My only concern that Olympus will continue to control the manufacturing, because if the new venture controls manufacturing possibly under a new quality system etc they would have to prove them selves over a number of years.
 

Robstar1963

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......The last new high end camera which Olympus released was actually M-1 II in 2016. Some might even argue that it was just a facelift of original 2013 M-1 but I would call it a new model because it had new 20MP sensor with hybrid AF, 4k video, high res mode and so on.....
?.. Apart from the EM1X and the EM1/3 ?
 

amit

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One very essential part of this ability is called "money". Olympus camera business has now made losses for three consecutive years and for example the loss for FY 2019 was USD157 million.

Olympus was able to keep pouring money into camera unit because it had such historical importance and it had become really marginal compared to total size of Olympus corporation (some 8% of revenue at the end) but JIP is definitely not able to spend even fraction of that.

More worrying is the question "What did we get for all this money Olympus spent during last three years?".

The last new high end camera which Olympus released was actually M-1 II in 2016. Some might even argue that it was just a facelift of original 2013 M-1 but I would call it a new model because it had new 20MP sensor with hybrid AF, 4k video, high res mode and so on.

Olympus has also poured substantial amount of money into camera business after 2016 but all they coughed up were essentially M-1 II upgrades which all use the very same sensor and have practically same even if somewhat improved features.

In the meantime the requirements for high end ILC specs have certainly not become easier so even if the R&D staff is still there, where is JIP going to find money to run it and how are they going to justify this investment. JIP will certainly not spend a single dollar unless they see a way to create profit.
Why would you buy a losing company?
And OM-digital solutions doesnt sound like a camera brand.
More like "lets buy olympus tech and use it in other things" (solutions) .
 
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BDR-529

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Why would you buy a loosing company?
Unfortunately that was not even the correct question.

It would be: "Why would you buy a perpetually loss making business unit which operates in rapidly and permanently shrinking ILC market where technological development and all your competitors have not only moved to an entirely different mount system but also started a fierce price war by undercutting your price points with products that are seen as superior by most customers?"

Since all evidence points to JIP actually doing just that I'm more than curious to see the answer. Assuming that they are not planning to commit a financial seppuku, JIP must have some grand plan which I'm just not able to understand at the moment.
 

BDR-529

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This is the very same setup JIP had with Sony when they bought VAIO. Sony still has a 5% share in what became Vaio Corporation and for a good reason.
Namely Sony never sold even the VAIO brand to JIP. They still own this brand and logo and just lease it to Vaio Corporation

Mere 5% share will not give Sony any power whatsoever over privately owned Vaio Corporation but it will buy them a seat at the board of directors table which means that Sony can monitor who is using their brand and for what. After all consumers will associate "VAIO" with Sony pretty much forever so it's important for Sony to know instantly if there's a need to cancel the brand lisencing contract on the spot.

OM and Zuiko will be likewise associated with Olympus so I'm not surprised to hear that Olympus might not lease even those brands to OM Digital Solutions without being able to supervise what kind of publicity these brands are about to get in the future.

This is all too familiar development in the car industry where final incarnations of manufacturers known as "Rover" and "Saab" never even owned the rights to their brands because original brand owners saw fit to make sure that these brands never fall in wrong hands.
 
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Darmok N Jalad

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I guess it leaves me hopeful. There’s already a really good base of bodies and lenses that Olympus made, so there aren’t huge holes for JIP to fill. It’s not like Nikon’s plight, where they are still trying to build out an entire lineup for their mirrorless endeavors. Heck, even Panasonic is starting from scratch with FF. I don’t know which position is less enviable if the ILC market is indeed declining. FF is likely a higher margin, but what good does that do you if you are also spending a lot of R&D dollars building out those new products at the same time? How many Olympus lenses need substantial updates or improvments?
 

hoodlum

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Some additional details from JIP.

https://newswitch.jp/p/23981&usg=ALkJrhhi_5GFSSrxmhxXVdrtClZkQKgbLA

We are proceeding with the direction of consolidating manufacturing bases into manufacturing bases in Vietnam in the medium term. Currently, it manufactures high-priced interchangeable lenses in Nagano Prefecture. It is expected that it will take time to complete the transfer because it requires advanced manufacturing technology. Until the preparations are complete, the conventional system will be maintained by outsourcing the manufacture of interchangeable lenses to Olympus.

The number of personnel will be adjusted to the optimum scale while coordinating with Olympus. The IC recorder and binoculars businesses included in the video business will continue. As the use of video content spreads, camera companies are trying to capture demand for video recording. Since high sound quality is required in addition to image quality, it is expected that the voice technology cultivated in IC recorders will be useful.
 

Holoholo55

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So their first camera is going to be called "OM Digital Solutions OM-D E-M1 Mark IV" (or E-M5 whatever) 😉
Haha... no. The press release clearly indicates that Olympus will continue to be the brand name, which is great. And, as @Lcrunyon said, I love that OM stands for Olympus Maitani. Having Maitani as part of the name really ties in the legacy of the creative genius who made some of Olympus's most groundbreaking cameras. https://casualphotophile.com/2018/01/12/yoshihisa-maitani-the-man-who-made-olympus/
 

SpecFoto

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One other item in this link regarding M4/3 that I found very interesting. First time I have heard JIP comment on M4/3.

"JIP has a policy of not significantly changing the outline of the current product group. As an interchangeable lens digital camera, we will continue to develop products that take advantage of the features of the "Micro Four Thirds System" standard, which has a small sensor size. In particular, the standard has the advantage that the interchangeable lens can be easily miniaturized, and the size and weight can be reduced even at super telephoto. Going forward, we will continue to develop products to capture demand from professional photographers and hobbyists, and promote differentiation from smartphones."
 

SteveAdler

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My Pentax ME Super from 1981 still works when I buy film and load it in a closet. I guess my EM1.2 will keep working for years to come and I doubt my skills will improve with some other camera and lens system.
 

RichardC

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My Pentax ME Super from 1981 still works when I buy film and load it in a closet. I guess my EM1.2 will keep working for years to come and I doubt my skills will improve with some other camera and lens system.
Which (other than the inclusion of a huge freebie) is the main reason why I just bought another one, and I'm not ruling out swopping my older body at a later date.

I don't take pictures at night, I will struggle to find better glass than I've already got in a different system, and I am a very long way off being fully proficient with the equipment I own.
 

BDR-529

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Steven, I had both my 1970 OM1 and 1950s Rolleiflex 2.8f 6x6 fully overhauled in the early 2000s.
These old mechanical cameras are just like high quality mechanical watches. They will run forever if only you have them occassionally serviced which is really nothing more than cleaning and few drops of oil here and there. As long as someone keeps manufacturing 35mm film, they will be around.

Digital ILC:s on the other hand are very powerfull computers which are squeezed into way too cramped housing without active cooling. To add insult to injury, they contain a lot of very delicate electromechanical components, none of which were designed to be serviceable or even replaceable in the first place. I've heard from owners that for example Olympus bodies are sent all the way to Japan because that's the only place in the world where they have the knowledge and necessary equipment to repair them. Not to mention spare parts even today, let alone in 5-6 years...

If anything fails after warranty period, it's usually not financially sensible to have digital cameras repaired anyway because technology improves at such pace that new and better models might not be that much more expensive than the service bill. Just think about any pre-2010 model DSLR:s today to get an idea of how long one might expect to use one digital camera purchased today.
 

BDR-529

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"JIP has a policy of not significantly changing the outline of the current product group. As an interchangeable lens digital camera, we will continue to develop products that take advantage of the features of the "Micro Four Thirds System" standard, which has a small sensor size. In particular, the standard has the advantage that the interchangeable lens can be easily miniaturized, and the size and weight can be reduced even at super telephoto. Going forward, we will continue to develop products to capture demand from professional photographers and hobbyists, and promote differentiation from smartphones."
This is almost identical to Pentax confirming their commitment to traditional SLR bodies over mirrorless technology one month ago.

"We design SLRs that allow the photographer to sense and capture the light coming through the SLR-exclusive pentaprism. We’d like to help them create images using all the elements of their creative imagination. From our experience, we know that many users truly enjoy the process in photo taking."

Statement is just another way of admitting that there's no way on earth Pentax could ever afford to design anything new, let alone create an entirely new mount ecosystem with a new set ot lenses. It will be just minor facelifts with mostly SW upgrades as long as Pentax stays in business.

Then again, Pentax users will be just as happy because they can keep using every single K-mount lens ever produced (after 1975) and their investment in lenses didn't become obsolete overnight. Pentax has found a loyal niche in landscape and astrophotographers and keeps servicing them with new SW features and weather sealed bodies/lenses. Mirrorless mounts and 8k video does not give any value to this group.

Since Pentax K1 is a FF camera, they might even be able to afford a new and better FF sensor in the future as these have now become the volume product where all the R&D money is allocated as well.
 
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