Leica Camera AG has a new CEO

Financial Times Deutschland (in German | in English) reports that Leica has changed their CEO again (seventh change in ten years). The new CEO is Adolf Alfred Schopf, 53 (update: here is the official press release with the correct name of the new CEO).

The article has also some other interesting information:

  • Patrick Thomas, the head of the French luxury goods group Hermès is on the Board of Directors of Leica Camera.
  • Hermès has a 49% stake in the Japanese subsidiary of Leica.
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  • Nobody Special

    Hermes sells luxury goods, so it’s not that surprising that Leica would have such an involved individual on the BoD. The 49% stake in the Japanese Leica Subsidiary is (I’m guessing) more to do with the import or sales distributorship of Leica Camera in Japan. Or, it may have something to do with Japanese trade laws that a Leica Board member has to be named to ‘represent’ the company there.

    Either way, the naming of a new CEO probably has significance towards the business end of Leica in Germany and the EU more than any outward sign of chaos.

    • I thought that Hermes is no longer an investor

  • Georg

    The new CEO is ALFRED Schopf

  • So they turn a huge profit and then chuck the guy who did it. Somebody lost a bet?

  • I wonder if this was a shareholder coup to stop the imminent delisting of the company. Running Leica is waaaaaaay different than running a luxury design brand, but that’s the point, they want to make money and exploit the brand and milk it given the success of Leica branded compacts made in Japan.

  • Nobody Special

    I’m not an expert on German tax laws or EU corporate guidelines, but they are different than here in the States. There are always changes in company big-wigs, but even more so when a company is getting back on it’s feet.

    It could be that a given individual is brought in for a short time just so they can turn a profit faster,,,,,who knows? I don’t really care, nor do I read anything coercive into it. For the first time in many years, Leica is moving forward – they are obviously doing the correct things to do so.

  • yoshitoshi

    Well if this guy doesnt work out, I’m up for giving it a shot. I have some free time.

    • you have my vote. A leica in every walmart could be our slogan, and I say our because I would expect a swanky position in the corporation.

      • Nobody Special

        maybe you could be a ‘greeter’,,,,,,maybe we all could!

        • Anonymous

          done and done. We can give out noctilux shot glasses

          • ZoetMB

            No good….they make you drink too fast.

  • Ian Gilbert

    Line extensions are often problematic. There have always been limited-production collectors’ edition Leicas, but Hermes-edition Leicas may create a significant and very lucrative additional market that 1) could skew corporate judgments and 2) diminish the brand in the estimation of pros and prosumers.

    How many upper-class twits does it take to damage a brand?

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