Olympus Agreed on Transfer of Imaging Business with JIP

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  • Kevin Raber
    Kevin Raber
    Silver Member
    Posts: 1289
    PXL News
    on: October 5, 2020 at 6:19 pm

    This is the press release I received on the Olympus Transfer of business.

    Tokyo, September 30, 2020 – Olympus Corporation (“Olympus”) today concluded a definitive agreement with Japan Industrial Partners Inc. (“JIP”) regarding the transfer of the Olympus Imaging business. Under the agreement, Olympus will transfer its Imaging business to a newly established wholly-owned subsidiary of Olympus (the “New Imaging Company”), through an absorption-type split. This is to be followed by transferring 95% of the shares of the New Imaging Company on January 1, 2021, to OJ Holdings, Ltd., a special purpose company established by JIP.


    Olympus began the manufacture and sale of cameras using the Zuiko lens in 1936 and became one of the world’s leading camera makers. Olympus was among the first companies to make small, lightweight, compact cameras with professional quality, such as the award-winning Olympus ‘OM’ and ‘Pen’ series. Driven by the desire to make people’s lives more fulfilling around the world, the company applied innovative technology and unique product development to distinguish itself in a highly competitive industry. 


    In recent years, however, the market has shrunk rapidly due to the evolution of smartphones, leading to a significant downturn for the digital camera market globally. Despite taking various steps to improve its cost structure and efficiency, Olympus’ Imaging business recorded operating losses for three consecutive fiscal years up to March 2020. 


    Under such circumstances, Olympus concluded that, by carving-out the Imaging business and operating the business under JIP, its business structure would become more compact, efficient, and agile, and it is the most appropriate way to realize self-sustainable and continuous growth. With a loyal following and long history of innovative products, the New Imaging Company would be committed to building on Olympus’ accumulated expertise and to continue providing customers with innovative, high quality cameras under the new business structure. 


    I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to all our customers for their patronage and support of Olympus products, and for their passion devoted to photography. I have the utmost confidence that this transfer is the correct step forward in sustaining the value of our products and services,” said Yasuo Takeuchi, President and CEO of Olympus Corporation. 


    At the same time, I am certain that this opportunity is the best choice for our long-time patrons, new customers and photography enthusiasts. Under the new company, the development, manufacturing, sales and service functions will continue tight collaboration to introduce new products that will satisfy customers,” Takeuchi added.


    The agreement applies to Olympus’ global Imaging business, which includes all R&D and manufacturing facilities currently dedicated to its Imaging business. The New Imaging Company will continue to provide high-quality, highly reliable products. Built on a solid foundation, including the Zuiko and OM brands, which are grounded in optics and digital imaging technologies cultivated by Olympus over many years, the New Imaging Company will be appropriately positioned to further pursue new developments. 


    Head of sales and marketing, R&D and designing departments for imaging products will be relocated to the headquarters of the New Imaging Company in Hachioji, Tokyo. Production will continue at the location in Dong Nai province, Vietnam, where imaging products are currently manufactured. The New Imaging Company will continue to provide customer support for the imaging products which have been manufactured and sold by Olympus. 


    Following the transfer of the Imaging business, Olympus will concentrate on Medical and Scientific Solutions, in our ongoing efforts toward making people’s lives healthier, safer and more fulfilling.


    Information on the New Imaging Company is as follows.

    l  Company name: OM Digital Solutions Corporation

    l  Location: Hachioji, Tokyo

    l  Representative Director: Shigemi Sugimoto

    l  Business operations: Operations involving the manufacture and sale of digital cameras (primarily mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras), interchangeable lenses, IC recorders, and other audio products

    l  Capital: Not fixed


    For the details about the company split and the transfer of shares, please refer our corporate disclosure “Signing of Definitive Agreement for Divestiture of Imaging Business.”




    Kevin Raber
    Owner and Publisher of photoPXL

    Oliver Ritter-Wolff
    Oliver Ritter-Wolff
    Silver Member
    Posts: 196
    Re: Olympus Agreed on Transfer of Imaging Business with JIP
    Reply #1 on: October 6, 2020 at 4:02 am

    Let’s see how it goes on with mFT and JIP and especially if Panasonic mFT will continue alone. I know a lot of people who are very satisfied with mFT photography and consciously accept certain restrictions with the Sensor for the advantage of a relatively small and compact system. Whether this will be the end, in the difficult situation of the whole photo market, but enough to continue mFT will be shown in the coming months or years.

    I would regret it if mFT would disappear from the market but FT was also unfortunately buried by Olympus without a word.






    Keith Reavis
    Keith Reavis
    Posts: 1
    Re: Olympus Agreed on Transfer of Imaging Business with JIP
    Reply #2 on: January 6, 2021 at 3:09 pm

    Having transitioned from Nikon DX (crop sensor) to Olympus mFT several years ago, I never really thought of Olympus as abandoning FT so much as recognizing and leading the path forward from DSLR technology to Mirrorless. Part of the consideration for switching to Olympus was the introduction of the EM1 and adapter that would allow use of FT lenses on the new Mirrorless cameras. That showed a commitment from Olympus to users of their legacy products. I actually felt more abandoned by Nikon, whose commitment to the DX system turned out to be lip service as the lens line never really developed beyond several very similar consumer grade lenses, no D400, and a way too late D500. I’m currently staying the course as I have a good selection of pro lenses for mFT and enjoy using the system. I am cautiously optimistic about the future of mFT, either with OMDS or Panasonic. That said, I recognize the camera industry will probably come back down to a few key big players, with FF likely having the most stable future for the foreseeable time, and will possibly start down the path of yet another system switch in the next couple of years<!–/data/user/0/com.samsung.android.app.notes/files/clipdata/clipdata_bodytext_210106_140751_128.sdocx–>

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