Did Olympus Cameras Go Out of Business? The Future of the Olympus Brand in Photography

Olympus, a once-prominent camera brand, has made headlines with its decision to sell off its imaging business after an impressive 84-year tenure in the industry. The announcement, made in June 2020, has raised questions about the future of the Olympus brand in the world of photography.

The End of an Era for Olympus Cameras

Olympus, a Japanese firm, acknowledged that despite their best efforts, the “extremely severe” digital camera market was no longer profitable. The arrival of smartphones, which significantly diminished the demand for separate cameras, was identified as a major contributing factor to their decision to sell off the imaging business.

The company’s journey in the camera industry began in 1936 with the production of its first camera, the Semi-Olympus I. Over the decades, Olympus continued to innovate and grow its camera business, becoming a leading player in the market. However, the market for standalone cameras has plummeted, with one estimate showing a drop of 84% between 2010 and 2018.

The Future of Olympus Cameras: OM Digital Solutions Takes Over

In January 2021, Olympus completed the transfer of its imaging business to Japan Industrial Partners Inc. (JIP). OM Digital Solutions Corporation, a new company formed by JIP, now owns the Olympus camera brands, including Zuiko lenses and the OM series.

OM Digital Solutions Corporation has assured that they will continue to provide customer support for the imaging products manufactured and sold by Olympus. They also plan to develop and introduce unique products to create new value while continuing to provide high-quality, highly reliable products under the Olympus, Zuiko, and OM brands.

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Yasuo Takeuchi, President and CEO of Olympus Corporation, expressed his delight that the imaging business will continue to develop and thrive under OM Digital Solutions Corporation. He also stated that following the transfer, Olympus will concentrate on its Medical and Scientific Solutions divisions, in an effort to become a global medtech company.

Despite the sale, Olympus fans can take comfort in the fact that the Olympus brand name will continue to be used on cameras for the foreseeable future. OM Digital Solutions Corporation has licensed the use of the Olympus brand name, ensuring that the iconic brand will remain a part of the photography landscape.

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