From the Olympus Website--A little better translation than DPReview

Started Feb 14, 2013 | Discussions thread
Craig from Nevada
Contributing MemberPosts: 625Gear list
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Re: Harsh News
In reply to alatchin, Feb 16, 2013

alatchin wrote:

Craig from Nevada wrote:

I happen to think that the losses that are reported on the Olympus webpage make every statement we have heard over the past year irrelevant. Really. All bets are off.

Why? Why would you assume losing some money, which they were expecting would mean that "all bets are off"? You make a number of massive, and I mean massive assumptions below... YOu speak for a board of directors, you speak for Olympus Imaging... I mean you are holding a conversation with yourself and presuming this reflects reality.

If I am a shareholder, my first question is "how are you going to stem the losses and return to profitability?"

Considering they have done nothing we can see for 2years in the DSLR market how can anyone attribute these loses to that division. If olympus says "by our own calculations we still have over 1million DSLR users worldwide and we new have a compelling product upgrade for them. Would that not make sense? If they said "from our research in our m43rds groups there are many who are looking to upgrade to a DSLR, combined with our 750,000 active 43rds users we have a market for 2 DSLR bodies"

Real simple--there are two types of products: 1) those that are profitable; and 2) those that are not. Given the growth in red ink this past year, I might conclude that none of the cameras fall into category 2.

We dont know how much money olympus makes off each camera... No idea. However we can assume that as much of the development for 43rds is shared with m43rds the more you can share your costs, the greater your profit margins. YOu assumption they make no money off bodies is just an assumption. My thinking is their compacts, including these new ones have gone nowhere. But these are guesses.

I am wonder how Olympus can price an OMD at $1,000 and show profit but Panasonic must price the GH3 at a much higher price? I don't think Olympus can. Take at look at the red ink spilled since OMD was released. If I am on the board, my second question is "is this going to show a product anytime soon?"

Olympus has shared its technology easily between multiple bodies. The OMD sensor is in 3 camera lines, with its processors etc. The GH3 doesnt share many components with other cameras, processing, technology etc. Hence the higher pricepoint. Market share may also play a part with Panasonic hoping the success of the GH2 would push GH3 sales. The GH3 may drop quickly to the $1000 mark just as the Sigma dropped to 25% of its asking price.

Now comes talk of a new generation of E-system? Be serious. My third question is "how can you turn a profit on DSLR, when you have already stated it is done and have relinquished any position in the market?" Sorry, one camera, does not make a coherent package of products.

See above. You seem to think "market position" is like a race. the 100m 200m and 400m are run separately. Mind share in cameras has been improving with m43rds. Olympus is winning new users every day, who are beginning to appreciate the benefits of Olympus products, the quality of Olympus lenses etc. Combined with a relatively captive group of lens owners (globally speaking, how many do you think that is?) and re-invigorated distribution with m43rds it is quite easy to conceive of 2 new DSLR bodies redesigned for market appeal (ala OMD) smaller, and more feature packed. Considering again these bodies share guts with m43rds products we are not talking about a FF, APSC and 1" like Nikon, who is doing very little with the DX and 1 series lenses... we are not even talking Pentax 645D, APSC and Q, we are talking 43rds.

My fourth question is "Can the intellectual property be sold as part of the going out of business sale?"

Probably, but to who? Panasonic? Sony? SOny may want Olympus lens engineers... But probably not. The real question is, if an optical company who has made cameras for what? 70 years? I dont know... Decides to close up shop, what presence to they how in the consumer realm? It is more likely they will batten down the hatches, simplify their m43rds and 43rds releases... If they are ready for the hybrid body then they have done it, they have opened up the entire professional line of HG and SHG lenses to m43rds users who want it, while delivering better CAF etc.

Call me one of the "ney sayers" but I happen to think that the imagining division at Olympus isn't a hobby. They need a path to profitability. The rumor mill is probably one of several options under consideration and I would guess that the in-fighting at Olympus is something ugly--those who think DSLR should be retained and those who do not.

Again, this type of story telling means nothing "ugly fighting". The imaging division must make a profit, where the loses are coming from is only known to Olympus. How much time the company has to turn the ship is only known to Olympus. Their total customer base is only known to Olympus.

In a world where there are too many cameras chasing too few buyers, the choices are tough. Show me a road map that makes some sense.

Yet profits are there. The real question is, what product configuration will work best to attract and satisfy the buyer?

Just for discussion, here is my take. Olympus has stormed into m43rds, the wanted as many E-XXX users to migrate down to m43rds, this is a partial success and a partial failure. This was probably expected. However what was probably discovered was that as FF comes down in price DX users will start to become a feeder system for FF. Hence the slow development of DX lenses.

Olympus didnt have a feeder system, they had smaller, medium and larger cameras. So they moved on m43rds hard, ceasing 43rds production for a given time while they establish a new customer base in m43rds. They may well have considered the E-X users the window, they are the most invested and also most likely to be brand advocates. Given 3 years to push hard in m43rds they have been developing a new 43rds line, possibly 2 bodies, possibly hybrid.

If there is one thing that has been predicted is the reduction of the cost of FF cameras, Olympus could well have considered that when Nikon and Canon start their efforts to move users up to FF they could offer a compelling 43rds camera for users (hybrid or DSLR). That year is now, it seems the 7D and D7000 and even A77 are a bit long in the tooth, with the release of the D600 and 6D there is a moment to exploit with a new camera or two.

Combine the upgrades from existing users with trickle up from m43rds and potential buy in from A77 users or even *gasp* potential canon and nikon crop sensor customer (previous D3100 D5100 rebel users) and there could very well be a strong market for a new 43rds camera from Olympus.

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“You don’t take a photograph, you make it.” -Ansel Adams
blog.alatchinphotography(dot)com

Have some reality from the Olympus investor webpages--Medical is doing fine. Imaging is bleeding money.

http://www.olympus-global.com/en/common/pdf/n130212aE_n3.pdf

http://www.olympus-global.com/en/common/pdf/n130212aE_n.pdf

http://www.olympus-global.com/en/common/pdf/n130212aE_n2.pdf

Olympus has about 170 million reasons to get out of the camera business.

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