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Leica Financial Status?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/19/2005 at 09:03
Rusty View Drop Down
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I keep reading/hearing that Leica is in deep financila trouble.  I read on one webpage that Leica has filed for bankruptcy in February 2005.  Has anyone else heard these rumblings?  I haven't heard or seen any "official statements" from Leica, so I am just wondering if this heresay. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/19/2005 at 09:57
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The supposedly lost a lot of money on the camera side for not jumping on the digital band wagon soon enough.  There was a post here that had more specifics but it got lost in the crash.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2005 at 11:56
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"Leica is in deep financila trouble"

 

I thought you had to take antibiotics for that 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2005 at 12:12
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Originally posted by mwyates mwyates wrote:

"Leica is in deep financila trouble"

 

I thought you had to take antibiotics for that 

 

   

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2005 at 18:26
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Leica has always made great cameras. Leica also today makes a great film / digital camera which can do both. The problem Leica is having (as well as many camera makers) is that the digital market is a consumer market (Made mostly in China and name sold under slapped on the front) and Leica has lost / or decided not to make cameras for either the professionals nor consumer.

 

The pros need large 4x5 and 120mm (Medium) Format Cameras in Film and Digital. The consumers are buying cheap Chinese made cameras that cost $25 to make and sell for $250  at Cosco. The consumer is buying cheap and easy not quality; in turn Leica has been hit.

 

Leica has been caught in the middle with a very good and expensive line of 35mm Cameras and their switch hit camera is too expensive and doesn't catch the pros. On a side note Leica has sold or is making third party an older design film camera (minus the film) as the new camera Epson sells as their Digital Camera.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2005 at 18:52
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I seen this on a web site

 

German website, Spiegel Online, has reported that Leica is in financial crisis after many banks cut its credit lines following an announcement last week, which said it stood to lose half its operating capital. The company, which introduced the first 35mm still camera in 1924, is also expected to close the financial year with an operating loss of €10 million (approx $13 million). Last year it reported a loss of €1.6 million (approx $2.1 million). Shareholders will hold a meeting on May 31 to discuss the future of the company. Spiegel Online says that Leica has missed the boat where digital photography is concerned and it is also suffering due to the low rate of the US dollar versus the Euro.

 

My question is, would you be concerned about buying a new pair of ultrivid or geovids now? I guess what I'm asking, is leica going to be around long enough in case a person does need warranty work ?

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/21/2005 at 21:59
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So with so much info out there some right, some wrong how does a person know, if they are in trouble I doubt someone who sells their stuff is going to bring us up to speed while they are sitting on inventory. Just last week I bought a pair of geovids, so I am interested in whats really going on.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2005 at 09:57
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This may sound funny, but as long as Leica keeps the quality control up, I would probably still buy their binoculars or spotting scopes even if they were going BK.  Binoculars and spotting scopes usually are fairly long lasting and not as finicky as electronics. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2005 at 22:03
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"This may sound funny, but as long as Leica keeps the quality control up, I would probably still buy their binoculars or spotting scopes even if they were going BK.  Binoculars and spotting scopes usually are fairly long lasting and not as finicky as electronics." 

 

But how about the Geovids?

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/26/2005 at 19:55
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Shiz........I recently bought a pair of ultravids.  I know the Leicas are awesome but the passport warranty kinda sucks if they disappear.   What would happen to any warranty problems if they disappear?  Kinda wish I had Swaro or Zeiss if this thing doesn't turn out so good.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/27/2005 at 02:50
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I personally am not all that concerned about something happening to Leica.  I'm sure there will be some restructuring, but their sports optics division is too strong for them to disappear.  It would be like BMW declaring bankrupcy.  They are too good and sought after to go away.  At worst case someone would buy them and let them run as a separate company.  I really don't know alot about this, but it's my guess.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/01/2005 at 01:25
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I think you are most likely right tbone1.  It probably will delay a few new product offerings though.  Now that I have had time to think it through...I am not too worried any more.  I wonder who would buy them?   It would be cool if Trijicon did, but....

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/05/2005 at 12:00
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Reuters report


Crisis-Hit Leica to Raise Capital to Restructure

Mon Apr 18, 2005 01:05 AM ET

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Germany's Leica Camera AG proposed measures on Friday to restore its capital base and raise funds for restructuring as it faces huge losses, which a recent push into digital technology failed to avert.
Chief Executive Ralf Coenen will leave management and be replaced by interim CEO Josef Spichtig, a Swiss restructuring expert, Leica said in a statement. Shares in the legendary camera maker closed down 20 percent to 2.26 euros.

The company, which invented the 35mm camera and whose origins date back to 1849, plans to cut its share capital and plunder reserves to offset depreciation and other losses totaling 14.2 million euros ($18.3 million).

Leica said its supervisory board would propose to shareholders to reduce the company's nominal share capital by 10 million euros to 1.5 million euros and to do a reverse share split to cut the number of shares by two thirds to 1.5 million.

At the same time, Leica, which said last week it would make a deeper-than-expected operating loss of 12.8 million euros for its fiscal 2004/05 year, said it would dissolve its capital reserves of 4.2 million euros.

On that foundation, Leica wants to issue up to 13.5 million new shares at 1.70 euros per share, which it would offer to existing shareholders at the rate of nine new shares for every one held.

Leica specializes in making expensive, mechanical, film-based cameras for devotees around the world and has been hit hard by the booming popularity of digital photography.

The measures unanimously approved by the supervisory board on Friday will be put to shareholders to vote on May 31.


© Reuters 2005. All Rights Reserved.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: May/07/2005 at 17:51
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I am sure Leica will stay around in some form at least. I wouldn't be too worried about buying a Leica binocular or spotting scope at all. Leica is a well known brand name and will be making sporting optics for a long time, regardless of any corporate restructuring that they will have to do to remain competitive. JMHO
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/01/2005 at 09:28
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Has there been any update on the status on Leica and there situation?

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/01/2005 at 12:20
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General Meeting approves capital measures and

gives 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.

 

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