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Camera company, Leica, in crisis

Creditor banks partly quit the lines of credit to legendary German camera manufacturer

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We've seen a report on German web site that translates as follows:

Several creditors lost patience with the camera manufacturer Leica and went back on their commitment. The financial crisis of the traditional enterprise sharpens itself.

Leica camera: Operational loss of ten million euro. In view of the high losses creditor banks partly quit the lines of credit. For Leica shareholders this is the second setback within a few days. On Friday the enterprise admitted that a loss equivalent to half of the capital stock was to be expected.

Leica Camera continued to say that the remaining lines of credit covered the present liquidity needs still. The management is negotiating with the banks about a solution, which carries the enterprise as far as the announced extraordinary general meeting on 31 May. At the shareholder meeting Leica wants to suggest capital measures, which the enterprise did not want to designate yet prior to the shareholders meeting.

The steeped in tradition camera manufacturer will presumably lock the financial year 2004/05 on 31 March with an operational loss of ten million euro. Together with a loss brought forward from previous account of 1.6 million euro from the previous year the capital of the Leica Camera AG thereby sinks below the threshold of 50 per cent of the capital stock. With the loss of half of the capital stock the law on limited companies prescribes compellingly the summoning of a general meeting, on which the executive committee must present counter measures.

Leica have overslept and suffers losses from the trend towards digital photography. The weak dollar impairs the business abroad, because the cameras earn less money in Germany now.

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