Leica Shop in Vienna sold

MailToronto. I received an interesting email tonight from Stephan Musli in Vienna. He announced the sale by Peter Coeln of his majority interest (nearly 75%) in the well known Leica Shop, Leica Store and WestLicht Photographica Auctions to Leica Camera AG.

Here is the email in full:

Peter Coeln has sold almost 75 percent of the shares of his Peter Coeln GesmbH in Vienna to Leica Camera AG in Wetzlar. He will continue in his position as Managing Director of Peter Coeln GesmbH.
Both companies consider the transaction an outstanding strategy to further expand their business. The shares sold to Leica AG include the Leica Shop Vienna and the auction house WestLicht Photographica Auction on Westbahnstraße, as well as the Leica Store close the Vienna State Opera. The parties have agreed to disclose none of the financial details of the transaction.
Thanks to the new distribution of majorities, Peter Coeln GesmbH will make greater use of synergies between Leica and the Leica Shop, securing the successful operations and long-term existence of Peter Coeln GesmbH.
Peter Coeln, Managing Director of Peter Coeln GesmbH: “I am delighted that our highly successful partnership with Leica Camera AG will continue, creating synergies which reinforce the intrinsic and enduring value of old and new Leica products. As always, we will continue to pay particular attention to customer service in our specialist stores, in online trading and at our auctions.”
Image: Ronald Marcel Peters (CFO Leica Camera AG), Peter Coeln and Alfred Schopf (CEO Leica Camera AG) at Leica Shop, Vienna
23 years ago, Peter Coeln founded the Leica Shop in Vienna – the first of its kind in the world: specialized in collector’s items, used equipment and new products of the Leica brand. Over the past years, the firm has acquired an excellent reputation as a competent buyer and seller of historical cameras, photographs and other collectibles from the field of photo-optics, and thanks to its employees it commands a market and expert competency unique throughout the world.WestLicht Photographica Auction is the world’s largest auction house for historical cameras and collectibles today. During the past, many record prices for cameras were achieved here, including the world record for the most expensive camera ever sold, a 0-series Leica dated 1923 (2.16 million Euros). The auction house, now in its twelfth year of activities, also holds successful photograph auctions and is part of Peter Coeln GesmbH.The Photography Museum WestLicht, founded in 2001, and the Photography Gallery OstLicht GesmbH, founded two years ago, are not part of the transaction. The Photography Museum WestLicht will continue to be Vienna’s most important exhibition space for photography, hosting exhibitions of classical photography, fascinating thematic exhibitions and the annual World Press Photo Award show.
The independent photography gallery OstLicht will continue to dedicate itself to contemporary photographic art and to strengthen its position as a gallery selling photography. The extensive collection of photographs will be consolidated in a new central warehouse in the direct vicinity of the OstLicht Gallery, and is not part of the sale to Leica Camera AG. Nor is the collection of historical cameras exhibited at the Photography Museum WestLicht, unique throughout the world, included in the sales agreement.

Alfred Schopf, Chairman of the Executive Board of Leica Camera AG: “The acquisition of a majority holding in Peter Coeln GesmbH is a unique opportunity for Leica Camera AG to further expand and bolster its strong presence in the market for photographic collectibles and raise awareness for the Leica brand in this particular segment. At the same time, we will benefit enormously from Peter Coeln’s substantial expertise in the sale of new and used Leica products, auctions and online trading with used cameras.”

Leica Camera AG is an internationally operating premium-segment manufacturer of cameras and sport optics products. The legendary status of the Leica brand is founded on a long tradition of excellence in the construction of lenses. Combined with innovative technologies, Leica products continue to guarantee better pictures in all situations in the worlds of visualisation and perception to this day. Leica Camera AG has its headquarters in Wetzlar, in the state of Hesse in Germany, and a second production site in Vila Nova de Famalicão, Portugal. The company operates branch offices in England, France, Japan, Singapore, Switzerland, South Korea, Italy, Australia and the USA. New and innovative products have been the driving force behind the company’s positive development in recent years.

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