Leica management made mistakes, CEO admits

31st May 2005, Comments 0 comments

31 May 2005, SOLMS - The chief executive of German camera maker Leica, Josef Spichtig, admitted to shareholders on Tuesday that his management had made mistakes which had contributed to the company's problems.

31 May 2005

SOLMS - The chief executive of German camera maker Leica, Josef Spichtig, admitted to shareholders on Tuesday that his management had made mistakes which had contributed to the company's problems.

At an extraordinary session called to seek shareholder approval of a new emission of shares in order to finance Leica's revamping efforts, Spichtig said the company will return to break-even by the 2006-2007 fiscal year.

"I am convinced of the potential for being revamped," he said about Leica Camera, which in the fiscal year ending 31 March lost EUR 15.5 million, while turnover dropped 21 percent to EUR 93.7 million. Leica expects operating losses of EUR 13 million in the current business year.

Spichtig admitted that management mistakes had contributed to the problems, including Leica being too slow to offer new products, an apparent reference to the camera maker running behind competitors in the new technology of digital photography.

Under the rescue plans, Leica is seeking shareholder approval for the emission of up to 13.5 million new shares at EUR 1.70 per share. The company will be using the money to launch new products in sports optical equipment and digital photography.

DPA

Subject: German news

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