Rumors (now denied): Olympus to shut down camera division in less than 8 months

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The saving are not going to some big boost to their medical side.
Kawasaki Heavy Industries never really needed the motorcycle department, with ships, huge bridges or space satellites under their belts, even more so the Superbike Championship teams 20+ years ago. However, when they won their first SBK championship in 1993, the conglomerate president, a fully serious highly ranking zaibatsu elder figure was seen cheering and dancing like a kid by the start-finish line as Kawasaki snatched the title from the likes of Honda and Ducati. They clearly had the department running as a brand pridness endeavor, not at a serious if any loss however (hence the later badge engineering merger with Suzuki as sales slipped more).

Times have changed however and CFO word is much stronger vs pride nowadays.
 

demiro

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Fair enough. I just get annoyed that people can come up with these sort of rumours with obvious malicious intent which can make buyers nervous & cautious, to the extent they buy a different brand camera etc. I shouldn't be surprised as politicians do it all the time. :rolleyes:
I'd keep two things in mind: Occam's razor, and "follow the money". Not sure why you want to assign some cause beyond unscrupulous people trying to drive clicks to boost revenue, or assume they want to harm Olympus for no obvious reason.
 
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after this article and references, I may have developed a feeling of desire to slap the rumours originator right in the face...

25 years ago, an Athens, Greece local that imported used motorcycles from Japan thought he could play games with his Japanese sellers that provided him with the merchandise by postponing payment indefinetely as he wished - result? he was killed at an Athens restaurant by a Yakuza hitman - these guys do not take mind games lightly when it is all about their business honor - lookup how the manager that uncovered the Olympus financial scandal was treated back then
 

hoodlum

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I hate to be the bearer of more bad new but here it is. :frown:

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/olympus-may-cut-jobs-in-aggressive-push-to-increase-margins-1.1349997

Olympus Corp. is considering job cuts as the medical device and camera maker pushes forward with plans to almost double operating margin in the medium term, Chief Executive Officer Yasuo Takeuchi said.

“The issue of personnel will naturally need to be addressed,” Takeuchi, who was promoted from chief financial officer in April, told reporters in Tokyo on Tuesday. “It’s a strategy to improve performance, and something that will come about in due course.”

Takeuchi also backtracked on some of his comments in the past that the camera business was not for sale, saying that may not be the case anymore. The imaging unit, which makes up 6% of sales, is the lowest margin and lowest growth businesses in Olympus’s portfolio, according to past company presentations. Olympus is working to stabilize the imaging business by focusing on its main markets, a spokeswoman said.
 

Brownie

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I would like to add to this that it's a really interesting coincidence that this BS-rumor starts spreading the very same week that the E-M5 mk.III starts shipping world wide. I think someone out there is very intimidated by what is essentially the (more or less universally praised) E-M1 mk.II packaged into a slightly smaller, lighter, and more reasonably priced camera body.

I remember something a bit similar happened way back when the E-M5 classic was introduced in 2012. In general, my impression was that topics regarding Olympus cameras previously never got that much attention, then suddenly, after the E-M5 was launched, droves of trolls came in to slander Olympus, micro-4/3, the whole OM-D-thing, and the E-M5 in particular.
And it hasn't occurred to anyone that the 'rumors' may have been started for another reason? You said it yourself. No one was talking about them. Olympus topics never got that much attention. Then, someone mysteriously starts a rumor (on two separate occasions, 7 years apart) and the internet is all abuzz. Any publicity is good publicity, and this is free.

Things that make you go Hmmm...


a few days ago the one car manufacturer known for being The Small Car maker, FIAT, announced they will be exiting the small car segment due to too low profit margins to make it worth it - over here, that is UNHEARD OF for anybody interested in cars in most of Europe, and yes they did announce that!

hey, you, USA based reader! by small cars over here we mean something like the FIAT 500 and not the Toyota Corolla...
Sorry, I have driven full-size four door 4-wheel drive Chevrolet or GMC pickups exclusively since 1989. I wouldn't even consider driving something as small as a Fiat on the highway. And Fiat is correct, the profit margin on small cars is terrible, and that is true for all manufacturers.
 
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Sorry, I have driven full-size four door 4-wheel drive Chevrolet or GMC pickups exclusively since 1989. I wouldn't even consider driving something as small as a Fiat on the highway. And Fiat is correct, the profit margin on small cars is terrible, and that is true for all manufacturers.
hehe, you should get a Subaru then, stellar cage rigidity and compact enough!
jokes aside, you cannot practically navigate most european cities downtowns in an american size SUV/truck - I once saw a GMC truck on the Athens integrated suburb I lived until 10 years ago and it looked ridiculously behemoth in comparison to ALL cars around it - different needs here
 
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https://news.mapcamera.com/maptimes.php?itemid=32729

Also, I am happy to hear from executives who often see their names in overseas media.
He said, “OM-D E-M5 Mark III is a new start line. We will use this to develop products at the pace of 2 bodies and 3 lenses every year.”
I am now thinking (if this process has any real value to read on ) that
with the compacts & normal PENs sales due to die off shortly by the ongoing phone menace making them a lost cause,
Olympus tested the fancy Fuji-esque crowd waters with the Pen-F and the demanding pro/athletics crowd with the EM-1X,
assessed sales and interest generated (not looking enough to steer either of those ways)
and decided to streamline to mid (EM5) and high segment E-M1 only.

Two bodies series updated every 2-3 years does not sound bad to me if the cheaper one is always under 1000 eurodollars to make them accessible to me along the mature and refreshed lens ecosystem.

I guess we shall have model years from now on instead of mk designations.
 
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Pluttis

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Nothing strange or unexpected when the market and sales are dropping...basically what every other manufacturers have done before...how many jobs have not Fuji and Nikon cut off past years?
 

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The “rumours” got started because of internal media discussion in investor publications and online in Japan. It’s not just Olympus, but there is shareholder frustration in Japan about the imaging industry decline and the intransigence of executives addressing what many see as ego and legacy product lines and departments. There is general angst in Japanese industrial policy about some traditional industries being eclipsed by American (), China, (Huawei), and Korea (Samsung) in consumer and business electronics, especially on the profitable software side of things.

Olympus is under scrutiny in part because the consumer camera division lies well outside their B2B medical imaging division, both in focus and revenues. This story isn’t going away. And it isn’t exclusive to Olympus. They are simply more vulnerable, as is Ricoh, to criticism, given their very small market share and the general onslaught of affordable FF mirrorless. I can definitely see another supplier, likely Panasonic, taking over all m43. The sensor platform may simply be too small (in sensor size and market share) for multiple suppliers.
 
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I never understood why Japan stuff while generally excellent on the hardware side always lack in the software logic side - is the japanese way of thinking that more inflexible to the other oriental societies in the general area and this propagates to their products? building on what @Aristophanes notes, what I see is that in this mostly software driven age (FPGA hardware description languages included) they seem to be more & more missing the ever accelerating train for many years now... (....Sony AF engine aside)
 

Aristophanes

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I never understood why Japan stuff while generally excellent on the hardware side always lack in the software logic side - is the japanese way of thinking that more inflexible to the other oriental societies in the general area and this propagates to their products? building on what @Aristophanes notes, what I see is that in this mostly software driven age (FPGA hardware description languages included) they seem to be more & more missing the ever accelerating train for many years now... (....Sony AF engine aside)
Japan Inc. was prepared for hardware Engineering and unprepared for software. They had true smartphones before anyone else through their telecom companies, but it was all proprietary. The way the corporate and property and engineering culture thinks is in proprietary formats. It doesn’t help that software’s lingua franca is English. It is extemely challenging in Japanese tech culture to contemplate, for example, public licenses for platforms. Companies like Nintendo are insane with their code protection and integration. Open networking is anathema to a corporate culture that cannot envision every item have its own distinct revenue stream.
The optical camera companies have doubled down for the last 5 years on hardware, and not its catching up with declining sales, high overhead, and poor margins. They do possess great consumer loyalty. But those non-Japanese smartphones are taking so much market away.
 
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