Part I | Part II | Part III | Part IV | Part V | Part VI
External Link: Instruction Manual (HTML) for Rollei 35 Classic
Over the next few years, Rollei introduced new products to the market, in quick succession. The l966 Photokina proved to be a great moment in the history of Rollei, as the company from Brunswick simultaneously presented two products which caused great excitement in the trade, the SL 66 single-lens reflex with an interchangeable lens and an in-built swivelling bar for medium-sized formats, and the Rollei 35, the smallest 35-mm camera in the world, which was a real hit.
Apart from the product range, 1966 proved to be the turning-point in Rollei as a two-family company. The Heidecke family, which still held half of the company's capital, was bought out by the the Franke's.
The aggressive price policy had its consequences
In addition to the necessary loans, further funds were required for Peesel's aggressive product and expansion policies. At first, these were provided by the Landesbank in the form of loans, for which they later had to be compensated with capital in the company. Peesel saw a great future for Rollei, too great as it turned out later. He founded a branch factory in Uelzen, and then additional large production facilities in Singapore. These were joined by a large number of foreign sales subsidiaries. It soon became apparent that Peesel was aiming too high, and it was not long before the toast increase in production far exceeded worldwide demand. Peesel's police of expansion, which was wrong, although followed with the best intentions, was in part prepetusted bar his successors, Peter Peperzak and Heinz ;Wehling.
The last chapter in this part of the Rollei story concerns the photographic retailer, Hansheinz Porst, who arrived on the scene as Rollei's white knight. To him fell the task first of all of applying for a court composition on behalf of Rolled and ultimately also of introducing bankruptcy proceedings. The decline was so spectacular that many of the citizens of Brunswick even today believe that Rollei has gone out of business. The Rollei era appeared to have come to an end. "Appeared" is an appropriate word, because Rollei - as to re-emerge only a year later. A British company, United Scientific Holding, took over the parent company in Brunswick and its patents from the bankrupt's estate.
* New a Potentially good "Hunting Ground" for Rollei Users...
Message board for various brands of optic
Personal note: I have not been able to update the Rollei page due to development works on other classic 35mm bodies have really taken me a lot of my personal time and attention.So - If anyone of you wishes to volunteer himself in further development of this site, you can use the current page as a good template. I will sponsor the web hosting as well as help you out with the site design.
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