It's no secret that the market for cameras has been shrinking for a few years now, and with that, camera companies are certainly feeling the squeeze and looking for ways to gain more market share or even reinvent themselves. Among those facing the pressure is Olympus, who fiscal report for last year indicated a $157 million loss.
The news came in Olympus' financial results for the fiscal year that ended on March 31, 2019, in which the company showed a $157 million loss in its imaging division, with a 19% percent YoY decrease in revenue, including 23% decreases in mirrorless and 18% in compact cameras, though the report indicates a 14% gain in "others." The report attributes the losses to "reorganization of production bases [causing] constraints on supplies of some products" and increased competition. The company forecasts further losses in the next fiscal year, though they do project that the overall losses will be less than half of those from this past year.
The year was a strange one for Olympus, with the release of the E-M1X leaving a lot of photographers puzzled by its extreme capabilities, but a size and price tag more deserving of APS-C and full frame cameras. Luckily for the company, their other divisions did very well last year, bringing in more than enough profit to easily erase the losses of the imaging division. Still, it remains to be seen if the company has long-term plans to use those extra funds to attempt to bring the imaging division back to profitability or if we'll eventually see the demise of the Olympus camera brand.