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Olympus to divest Imaging Business
Olympus Corporation and Japan Industrial Partners, Inc. signed a memorandum of understanding to carveout Olympus’s Imaging business to a new company and subsequently transfer its shares to a fund managed, operated or otherwise handled by JIP.
After the due diligence and further discussions and negotiations, the parties are aiming to sign a legally binding definitive agreement for the Transaction by September 30, 2020, a company statement reads. Olympus's Imaging business began with the manufacture and sale of a camera using the photographic lens Zuiko in 1936 and - over the past several years - Olympus has implemented measures to cope with the extremely severe digital camera market, due to rapid market shrink caused by the evolution of smartphones. Among these measures are the improvement of cost structures by restructuring the manufacturing bases and focusing on high-value-added interchangeable lenses, aiming to rectify the earning structure to those that may continue generating profit even as sales dwindles. Despite all such efforts, Olympus’s Imaging business recorded operating losses for 3 consecutive fiscal years up to the term ended in March 2020. Under such circumstances, Olympus considered that, by carving-out the Imaging business and by operating the business with JIP, the Imaging business’s corporate structure may become more compact, efficient and agile and it will be the most appropriate way to realise its self-sustainable and continuous growth.
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