Following severe financial problems, Leica shareholders met yesterday to discuss the future of the company. The company aims to reorient its corporate structure to achieve a sales volume of around €100 million in the near future. It aims to simplify capital reduction, increase the share capital against contributions in cash and a creation of authorized capital. Dr. Josef Spichtig, chairman of the board of management of Leica Camera AG, described these measures as being “indispensable for the existence of the Company”. Leica Camera Group recorded a 21% sales decline from €119.1 million to €93.7 million, year ending March 31. The measures take into account operating losses of around €13 million for the next financial year (2005/2006). For the subsequent fiscal year, 2006/2007, the company aims to break even. Dr Spichtig, said he intended to continue the photo and sports optic units as well as Leica M and Leica R camera systems and compact cameras as 'co-operation products'.
General Meeting approves capital measures
Go-ahead for turnaround strategy
The Extraordinary General Meeting of Leica Camera AG on May 31, 2005 has approved the capital measures proposed by the Board of Management and the Supervisory Board, in each case with a vast majority of more than 90%. As announced in essential outline in the electronic Federal Gazette (elektronischer Bundesanzeiger) of April 20, 2005, the measures consist of a simplified capital reduction, an increase of the share capital against contributions in cash and a creation of authorised capital. At the General Meeting, Dr. Josef Spichtig, Chairman of the Board of Management of Leica Camera AG since April 18, 2005, described these measures as being “indispensable for the existence of the Company”. He rated the consent given by the shareholders as “a declaration for the preservation of the Company and a positive attitude to its perspectives in the future”. The Company now plans to issue 13.5 million new shares at a price of € 1.70 per share. The new shares will initially be offered to the existing shareholders of the Company.
According to Mr. Spichtig, the goal to be attained by the Company will be to reorientate its corporate structure in order to achieve a sales volume of approximately € 100 million in the near future. Mr. Spichtig said, he intended to continue all of the Company’s business, i.e., both the Photo and Sports Optics business units. In addition to the two camera systems, Leica M and Leica R, the Company will continue to offer compact cameras as cooperation products. In all product lines, digital solutions, development of which will be continued in cooperation with partners, will be strengthened. “As we all know, digital technologies have already been developed and are available on the market. We intend to combine these technologies with our Leica know-how, in keeping with the idea of engineering.
"To master this task, we plan to increase our human resources", said the Chairman. The maturity achieved in digital photo solutions, which had led to a neck-and-neck race with analogue processes at the high end, now increasingly offered room for Leica solutions, said Mr. Spichtig. State-of-the-art optics, a concentration on the essentials and solidity again were important factors, since sensors were no longer the main distinguishing quality characteristic of a digital system.
As concerns production and logistics, Mr. Spichtig said that he planned a streamlining, entailing, among other things, a halving of the Company’s inventory, which currently amounted to € 42 million. The measures were directed at the Solms and the Portuguese locations and would be implemented in a way that would not endanger “Made in Germany” manufacturing.
As to marketing and distribution, Mr. Spichtig sees his responsibility in reshaping the Company’s sales structure according to quality criteria. “For those Leica products that require explanation we need well-trained dealers who offer good service. We must gear our international distribution policy to the development of attractive business for our chosen partners”, said Mr. Spichtig.
In his speech to the Company’s shareholders Mr. Spichtig said that the Leica Camera Group in fiscal 2004/2005 (FY end March 31) had recorded a 21% sales decline from € 119.1 million to € 93.7 million in a difficult market environment. As to the reasons for this devolopment, Mr. Spichtig pointed out that there had been false estimations of the Company’s management concerning the speed at which the photo market would change over to digitalisation, combined with weak points in the Company’s structure, as well as external factors such as unfavourable exchange rates.
In addition to the expected loss of € 15.5 million already announced there could be a burden resulting from the valuation of inventories, as currently discussed with the Company’s auditors. Mr. Spichtig said the new valuation was not the result of a prior mistake in valuation but a possible effect of the currently prepared turnaround strategy on the valuation of inventory range.
The Company started into the new fiscal year with sales of € 6.2 million in the month of April. This resulted in a loss of € 1.7 million. The Company expects sales and losses on a similar scale for the month of May.
The losses have led to an excess of debts over assets in the Company’s financial reporting. However, subordination agreements ensure that the Company will not reach overindebtedness status at any time.
The capital measures are based on a results planning that takes into account operating losses in the € 13 million range in fiscal year 2005/2006. Mr. Spichtig said that the examination process with respect to possible improvements was not yet completed. Possible extraordinary expenditure for restructuring measures also had to be taken into account. For the subsequent fiscal year, 2006/2007, the Company had set the goal of a break-even result.
Nov 12, 2007
Aug 30, 2007
Aug 30, 2007
Aug 3, 2007
|Dirt Hose by poppyjk|
|European bee-eaters by drvanger|
from A Big Year - birds
|Fat Is Beautiful Guinea 2008 DP by MarioSS|
from - Fat is Beautiful - (Woman's Portrait n Black and White+ A Border)
The Ukrainian Parliament banned statues of Lenin in 2015. Two years later, the monuments no longer adorn public buildings or stand watch over town squares, but they're still there.
If you had to choose one camera to bring along for the ultimate West coast road trip, what would it be? DPR's Sam Spencer choose the X100F. Read more
The a9 boasts impressive capability. As more examples of it in practice pour in, Sony's claims hold up. Watch the a9 track and maintain focus on a rapidly approaching basketball.
Last week, more than a million tonnes of Californian coastline slid into the ocean, taking part of Highway 1 with it. Check out the remodeling in photos taken before and after the landslide.
Even after eighteen months of reviewing the latest, greatest, shiniest and must-buy-me-est new gear, DPReview staffer Carey Rose has continued to use older DSLR cameras for his freelance work. But now, that might be changing. Read more
Sony is the world's leading mirrorless camera brand but remains third for ILCs overall, it's said in a presentation to investors. A focus on high value cameras and lenses should boost operating income, it says. Read more
It's nicknamed the 'Cycloptic Mustard Monster,' and is a 3D printed medium format camera. Read more
The new NanGuang LED lights are battery powered and come with accessories including filters and diffusers.
Have you been telling yourself, "Hey, I really need one of those 8K displays?" A video about Dell's new 8K monitor shows you what to expect. Is it really that much better?
Tamara Lackey, a Nikon ambassador USA and pro shooter, discusses embracing self-consciousness as a means of connecting with subjects.
There's a new Spiderman movie coming out and the poster been generating a lot of online chatter. Mostly about how it looks like the creation of a fevered teenager that just discovered Photoshop.
An honest defense of the system's merits, with photos as proof.
Copyright disputes are no fun at all. 'Binded' is a new startup that aims to simplify the process of registering - and enforcing - copyright for photographers. Read more
Not everyone wants to pay a premium for a long zoom camera. Thankfully, there are many reasonably priced cameras available, though they won't offer the same image quality as enthusiast models. In this updated roundup we look at big zoom cameras with more consumer-friendly price tags. Read more
Think Tank Photo has updated two of its popular bag lines with improvements to functionality. Read more
We’ve all seen Bob Jackson’s Pulitzer Prize winning photo, but there's another.
The sample footage looks good.
It will automatically pick the best camera settings depending on shooting conditions. It even promises enhanced functionality for your camera, like exposure and focus stacking. It already supports many cameras from Canon, Fuji, Nikon and Sony. Read more
As if $13,950 wasn’t enough to pay for a special edition lens, the Leica Store in San Francisco is offering a prototype of said lens for $24,995. Read more
Make those old photos disappear without deleting them forever.
Firmware updates enable 10 fps shooting with adapted A-mount lenses, and faster startup times and better compatibility for 20 fps shooting when using native lenses on the a9.
Fujifilm has released firmware updates for its camera models X-T2, X-Pro2, GFX 50s, X-T20, X100F and X-T1 and updates to three of its software products.
A 22 year-old Romanian photographer uses his DJI Phantom 4 drone to capture unique perspectives of the city where he now lives.
What's it like to ride the waves with champion surfer Kelly Slater? This VR video from Teton Gravity Research gives you a taste.
When Nikon released the full-frame D3 in 2007, it changed the professional photography industry. In this week's Throwback Thursday, Barney remembers a legend. Read more
The new stuff should have better red hues, improved sensitivity and finer grain - but don't worry - will still shift blues to green, greens to purple and yellows to pink.
Ricoh has introduced a new rugged compact camera with a 16MP CMOS sensor, 28-140mm lens, 2.7" LCD and built-in LED macro lights. Read more
This compact drone can shoot HD video using a 2-axis stabilized 12MP camera. Read more
The new Prynt Pocket can print a photo directly from their iPhone simply by inserting the phone into the printer, then snapping a photo. Each print will cost about 50 cents. Read more
Updates for Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom CC bring support for the Sony A9 and Panasonic ZS70/TZ90, along with bug fixes.