The news that Olympus was spinning off its camera division wasn’t exactly a shock.
After all, we covered the on-and-off rumors for months before the company finally made it official.
In the meantime, the company has to play defense as much as possible – especially when it comes to reassuring longtime buyers that everything will be ok once Olympus divests itself of its storied division.
That has led to some confusing language out of the UK branch of the company which claims that sales are actually pretty good, despite the COVID-19 pandemic and the general slowdown in the industry.
“I don’t think there will be any major discounting as a result of this. The market has been difficult for the last few years anyway, then the current virus situation has made life even tougher for everybody but what I can tell you is that we have sold more products in the last three months in the UK than we did last year – sales in this first quarter are up.”
So, if things are solid, why is Olympus trying to get out of Dodge?
“There is a distinction between we can’t make money with the products, and we can’t make enough money. The division was making money, but it was loss making, and that is the amount of money you are making versus the costs – it doesn’t take a genius to work out you have to cut the costs,” Olympus UK Marketing Brand Manager Mark Thackara explained in an interview.
And if current Olympus owners are worried about continuity of service in the future, things should be smooth sailing.
“Don’t panic. As far as we are concerned it is business as usual. Businesses change hands and flourish, so there no reason this won’t be the case here. I have been through all sorts of ups and downs in my 35 years with Olympus. Our basic technology and core proposition are still very good.”
What do you think of Olympus’ plans to sell its camera unit to a hedge fund? Let us know your thoughts on this story in the comments section below if you like.
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