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06-24-2020, 12:55 AM - 3 Likes   #1
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Olympus will sell their Imaging business to Japan Industrial Partners

Olympus announced today they will sell their Imaging business to Japan Industrial Partners (JIP):

Signing of Memorandum of Understanding for Divestiture of Imaging Business - ir00013.pdf

The acquirer, Japan Industrial Partners, are a Japanese private equity fund specialising in restructuring / turnaround situations. They buy loss-making businesses, strive to make them profitable and, once done, resell them to corporate acquirers.

To give an example: they bought Sony's PC business (Vaio).

06-24-2020, 01:34 AM - 2 Likes   #2
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Funny how there were people on both side of:
"Oh, there is nothing wrong with Olympus - it's all rumours"
And other people saying "this is going down, stay and watch"
And along the way management was making public statements how everything is sunshine
06-24-2020, 01:53 AM - 2 Likes   #3
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I hope they survive, I've a soft spot for Olympus having owned the OM1, 2 and 10. If I didn't have a Pentax, I'd have an Olympus.
06-24-2020, 02:21 AM - 1 Like   #4
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Sony laptops have all but disappeared from the European market. Maybe they are just focusing on Japan. Not so good news. Private Equity isn't very patient.

06-24-2020, 02:27 AM   #5
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There's no indication in the MoU that they get to keep the Olympus name!
06-24-2020, 02:43 AM - 1 Like   #6
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I am not totally surprised. They do make beautiful cameras but they are a bit of a niche. The omd e-?10 is really small and, being m4/3, another thing that people have been killing for years, maybe they are just missing their targets. The omd is a small camera, possibly to replace a phone in the hands of young aspiring photographers, but styled like the camera "your dad used". They are a glorious thing and, had it been apsc, I would have seriously considered it as a platform. Olympus have brought out quite a few new versions of late, maybe they overreached themselves, not something you can accuse pentax of lol. So, that just leaves us as the last of the little guys. We aren't a niche because Pentax cameras are a Pentaxian take on mainstream. I just hope Ricoh have a love affair with photography.
06-24-2020, 02:53 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by D1N0 Quote
Sony laptops have all but disappeared from the European market. Maybe they are just focusing on Japan. Not so good news. Private Equity isn't very patient.
JIP relaunched Vaio in Japan first, then in additional markets such as Brazil and the USA. Not in Europe.

VAIO|個人向けモバイルノートパソコン

VAIO | Experience VAIO TruePerformance
06-24-2020, 02:57 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Paul the Sunman Quote
There's no indication in the MoU that they get to keep the Olympus name!
Indeed, there is none. On the other hand the press release explicitly states the OM-D and Zuiko brands will be part of the transaction.

The way some sentences are worded makes me feel that the new entity won't be allowed to use the Olympus brand after a transition period.

It may well be that Olympus's goal is not just to get rid of their loss-making Imaging business, but also to separate their name from whatever will become of the new company in the future.

Besides, JIP are known to exclusively resell their businesses to corporate acquirers, therefore it would be logical for them to capitalise on and develop such own brands as OM-D and Zuiko, which any acquirer can then further build upon.

06-24-2020, 03:46 AM - 1 Like   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by sundown Quote
Funny how there were people on both side of:
"Oh, there is nothing wrong with Olympus - it's all rumours"
And other people saying "this is going down, stay and watch"
And along the way management was making public statements how everything is sunshine
Itís just a role play. The ones who know donít tell, the ones who tell donít know.
06-24-2020, 03:48 AM   #10
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I also interpreted this release as implying they will not get the Olympus name. But including the Zuiko name in the sale would make sense because it is probably only used for lenses.

I had no idea that there was still a Vaio brand. When it was a Sony product it was visible everywhere, a tribute to Sonyís distribution system.
06-24-2020, 04:02 AM - 1 Like   #11
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The name will at least stay on current products. A new name would make the value of the operation a lot less because then you really loose the legacy. TCFKAO would not sell very well.
06-24-2020, 04:07 AM - 1 Like   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by D1N0 Quote
The name will at least stay on current products. A new name would make the value of the operation a lot less because then you really loose the legacy. TCFKAO would not sell very well.
What would be the difference between an OM-D camera and a Zuiko lens on the one hand, a Pentax camera and a Takumar lens during the Asahi Optical era on the other hand?
06-24-2020, 04:32 AM - 3 Likes   #13
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mFT is dead

With Olympus pretty close to dropping out I can't see mFT surviving.
06-24-2020, 04:40 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by beholder3 Quote
With Olympus pretty close to dropping out I can't see mFT surviving.
Who said whatever company emerges will be dropping m4/3? They are kind of stuck with it unless they want to develop an entirely new line of lenses using L mount like Panasonic...
06-24-2020, 04:46 AM - 1 Like   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
Who said whatever company emerges will be dropping m4/3? They are kind of stuck with it unless they want to develop an entirely new line of lenses using L mount like Panasonic...
Olympus have failed to make their camera business profitable for quite a long time, Panasonic has bailed out for FF and there is quite some push away from smaller sensors - a private equity fund doesn't strike me like the kind to try to stick to the idea unless they really think they can make it soar.
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