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Friday, 28 October 2011


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Olympus is conspicuously absent from the PhotoPlus Expo going on in New York City this week. So I was unable to check out the 12mm and 45mm lenses. But I was pleasantly surprised to find Panasonic there, the first time I can remember. So I was able to try out the sweet Leica 25mm.

In the end, I think the different investors will squabble and it's going to come down to a fight between the Yakuza and the Mafia.

Just like that Simpsons episode :)

Does your expert friend think the "something other than accounting fraud" is an illegal activity, or is he/she not now sure?

Very depressing. Is this another case of a good product being ruined by the same get-rich-quick MBA types who caused the economic meltdown of 2008?

So the real question for TOP readers: should I buy an E-P3 now or wait? What effect will the potential scandal have on pricing, supply, etc.?

Something like what?

This is a pattern that is not at all unknown when companies get caught at something here. Nobody expects anything other than that they hold out. Deny, lie, attack. Deny, lie, attack. Deny. Lie. Attack. Then, when there is no more room to maneuver, when further denials and lies are useless, when there is no other choice, have executives bow and "sincerely" and formally apologize before the cameras. Maybe even a tear or two. Perhaps the guilty parties will resign from their positions to take other postions in the company. Then, a few years later if they have gone to trail and been found guilty of a crime, they'll get a 2-year suspended sentence. Jail time? Oh, don't make me giggle.

Sorry. I have seen this sort of stuff too many times before, both up close and personal and in business and political news in Japan and have become very, very, cynical. I suppose I should be fair and give Olympus the benefit of a doubt and accept the explanation of the Olympus board that nothing wrong was done, that there was no criminal intent or actions, merely the most unbelievably incompetent leadership of a major company in years, if not ever. And anyway, Japan's securities watch puppy is continuing to watch!

Dang you Woodford, you troublemaker!

Note to self: Be wary of investing in a corporation that suddenly changes direction and branches out into areas controlled by organized crime.

As an active buying consumer of products manufactured by OLYMPUS which includes consumer digital products and Industrial Optics, Scopes, etc. I am convinced that this story will get much worse for the company and as usual the consumer will pay the penalty or perhaps we already have. The products although very good in quality I felt were always overpriced specifically the industrial product line. I never quite understood the pricing structure, I guess now it all makes sense. SHAME on all the quilty participants if this is proven to be fact. Although it smelled bad from the beginning but now the stench is repulsive. We as consumers have all the power but we never quite get fully organized, we should all boycot the company until they prove no wrongdoing and if vindicated we can then make our personal buying choices. I am quite tired of corpoarte scandals and a select few becoming the super rich elite while the rest of the worlds economies are in turmoil, throw them all in jail with harsh terms and sentences, no fancy federal prison time for white collar criminals.

This amassing of the legal arsenal amazes me, considering what Wall Street got away with in the last decade. I am becoming much more of a cynic than I would like, but whenever I hear about some overblown investigation, it always seems to me to be more marketing than anything, and I can't help but wonder what else they're trying to distract us from. That's too conspiratorial, I know.

My heart goes out to the many highly skilled people that design and make Olympus products.
You put your life and effort into something only to have it devalued by the people who obviously lack leadership and commitment to their people and their products.
As a long time Olympus camera customer, I am reconsidering future purchases.

Let's be pratical here. As a lover of Olympus photographic products, I'm interested how the presumably still-valuable portions of the company can be kept running. Can they "excise" the "bad" parts of the company and keep the same corproate shell? Or would it be better seperate imaging and photography into a new company? Would Olympus need new investors and managers?

No idea what Japanese corporate law says on the topic.

Man, I so wanted an OM1 back in the day, but I'd gone Pentax, so I ended up with an MX and a couple of ME Supers.For carrying, I ended up with a couple of Olympus point and shoots, and an XA, but somehow their digitals never grabbed me the same way.
Now they come out with a digital equivalent of something I'd actually want, WANT, I say, and this happens!
Not sure, but I seriously doubt the Japanese mob is all that interested in making cameras...

The revelations in this story seem to get worse and worse (see today's - nov 1 - Reuter's article on Woodford).

The payment made for advisory fees (sent to the Cayman islands) was $687 million for a $2.2 billion takeover, or about a third of the takeover price. The usual fee is 1-2%. So there is something seriously wrong, especially as the Japanese management is claiming that 'it is normal'.

Their auditors, Ernst&Young are tight lipped about it all, which also does not look good for them in the long run.

Recent commentary in The Guardian:


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