Olympus claims losses cut by 60% thanks to great OM-D E-M1 sales

by Felix Esser

posted Friday, February 7, 2014 at 10:51 AM EDT

When Olympus first introduced the OM-D E-M1, the company touted it as its flagship model in both the Micro Four Thirds and the now-discontinued Four Thirds E-system cameras that with the Olympus E-5. Immediately after its release, the camera was showered with raving reviews, and it quickly made it to #1 on Amazon.com's list of best-selling mirrorless system cameras.

Now Olympus reports that thanks to the great sales figures of the OM-D E-M1, the company was able to shrink the losses of its imaging division by more than 60%, thanks to a rise in mirrorless camera sales of 19%. While Olympus is still not back to making profits again from its camera business, this is still pretty amazing because when you think about it, it's really one single camera that proved so profitable for the company that its imaging division was able to reduce its operating losses from JPY4.3 billion (US$41.9 million) to JPY1.7 billion (US$16.6 million).

The success of the OM-D E-M1 as a camera also means that Olympus is selling more Micro Four Thirds lenses -- more than 30% according to this internal report (PDF-file; more details can be found here.) This batch of good news from Olympus comes shortly after the latest CIPA camera sales report, which stated that world-wide sales of interchangeable-lens cameras had gone down considerably in 2013. Well, not for Olympus, apparently.

In order to further strengthen its Micro Four Thirds lineup, Olympus just recently introduced the new E-M10 entry-level OM-D camera, together with two new lenses that should continue the trend of selling very well: a 14-42mm pancake zoom and a 25mm f/1.8 'normal' lens that's equivalent to a 50mm on a classic 35mm film camera. Here's hoping that this upward trend for Olympus continues, and that its imaging division will be able to make profits again soon – which the company declared its goal for 2014 not long ago.

It's about time the company recovers from the accounting scandal that hit it so hard.

(via Amateur Photographer)