What Olympus Is Saying Poorly

Former Olympus executives and their investment advisers were arrested in a financial scandal said to involve a 13-year cover-up. Let's look at some of the company's recent communications.

On February 12, Olympus posted a presentation of their financial results ending March 12. The executive summary listed two "highlights":

  • "Business operations were solid in October-December, led by the Medical Business."
  • "Full year net-sales and operating income are expected to absorb the impact of strong yen, earthquake, and Thai flooding, and recover to the previous FY level."

Sounds like all good news to me! In fairness, Olympus has posted "corrections" for their financial statements.

In one extremely long sentence in a February 13 press release, Olympus explains these corrections (I think):

  Olympus Notice Concerning Forecasts

Back on February 1, the Management Reform Committee posted this nearly incomprehensible notice:

"The Management Reform Committee received a number of opinions from Olympus' shareholders, business partners, customers, financial institutions, employees and other stakeholders from January 10 through January 31, 2012. Such opinions shall be referenced in the process of the guidance and recommendations which the Committee will provide to the board of directors of the Company. We appreciate the initiative and cooperation."

That's an extraordinary number of prepositions in a short statement that says...what?

Assignment Ideas:

  • Rewrite the two statements using clear, simple language.
  • Identify all of the prepositions in the February 1 Management Reform Committee statement. How many do you find?