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What a Tangled Web: the Case of Olympus Essay

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What a Tangled Web:
The Case of Olympus
Angel PinaHardin
ACCU 620
November 8, 2013
Brandman University

What a Tangled Web:
The Case of Olympus
Organizations are rocked by scandals almost every day. From Enron to WorldCom, in the past 20 years, financial and accounting scandals have become the “norm”. Unfortunately, for Olympus, the story is no different. Rocked by an accounting scandal the public and investment community has lost trust in Olympus. Additionally, Olympus lost major shares in the market and was almost delisted from the Japanese and New York Stock Exchanges.
History of Olympus
Founded in 1919, Olympus Corporation originally established as Takachiho Seisakusho trademarked the name “Olympus” to illustrate its strong desire to “create high quality, world famous products” (Olympus Corporation, 2013). Olympus originally produced microscopes and by 1936, produced its first camera. Through the years, Olympus continued to produce microscopes and cameras as they grew and opened various manufacturing plant throughout Japan, Germany and eventually America in 1968. In 2002, Olympus developed the “first DNA computer for gene analysis development” setting itself up to become a major global manufacturer of Optoelectronic products. These products include “cameras, video sets, endoscopes for medicine and industrial use, microscopes, analytical equipment, office communication systems, laser-optical scanners, and ionic printers” (Bloomberg, 2013). The ascent of Olympus started to erode when accounting irregularities dating back to the early 1990’s plagued the company and contributed to the firing of the company’s president and eventual loss of revenue to shareholders.
The Scandal
A rising star in the Olympus Corporation and eventual whistleblower was Michael Woodward. He started his career as a young sales representative of Olympus medical equipment at KeyMed in Britain. Woodward convinced Olympus to establish a separate sales division for...

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