Archive for February 18th, 2012
WC, you will recall, is a happy user of Olympus Digital Single Lens Reflex cameras and especially Zuiko lenses. Every photo you have seen in this blog that was taken by WC was taken with Olympus equipment.
Olympus has betrayed its shareholders, its customers and its traditions by an extended series of crooked deals, and still more crooked deals attempting to hide the earlier ones. WC has written about the gruesome details earlier, and won’t put his readers through them again.
But seven of the persons involved in the corruption have been arrested by Japanese police. Here is a brief who’s who of the perps:
Tsuyoshi Kikukawa, who was the company’s chairman until the scandal broke last fall.
Hisashi Mori, the former executive vice president.
Hideo Yamada, a former internal auditor.
Akio Nakagawa and Nobumasa Yokoo, who ran Global Company, an investment firm. The firm’s receipt of several hundred of million dollars in advisory fees from Olympus in the early 2000s raised questions that eventually led to the accounting fraud being detected.
Taku Hada and Hiroshi Ono, who both had served on the board of Global. Mr. Hada was also listed as a director for three companies that Global is accused of helping Olympus to acquire, as part of the accounting fraud.
In the meantime, back at the company, there’s a $1.1 billion hole in its balance sheet. That has led to speculation that it would need to merge with or sell itself to a competitor to stay afloat. Then on Monday, Olympus forecast a $410 million loss for its financial year, which ends in March. If, as many fear, Olympus is delisted from the Tokyo Stock Exchange, it will all be over but the looting.
Nikon or Canon? Canon or Nikon? Looks like WC is going to have to decide.