Olympus Ex-CEO Woodford Plans to Fight for Control of Company

Olympus Ex-CEO Woodford Plans to Fight for Control of Company

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Center Valley, PA—Michael Woodford, the former CEO of the embattled Olympus Corporation who was ousted in October for exposing the company’s financial irregularities, told Reuters on December 13 “he has a realistic chance of winning a battle for control of the scandal-hit company and that he had the support of two major shareholders.”

Woodford also said he believes a proxy fight could be avoided. Having brought to light a $1.7 billion accounting scandal that has resulted in several executive reshufflings at Olympus Corp., Woodwood, a Briton, told reporters at Tokyo's Haneda Airport that “any board he would select to take over from current management would be overwhelmingly Japanese, and that he would have no part in selling or breaking up the company,” according to Reuters.

Olympus’s new president and CEO, Shuichi Takayama, announced on December 6 that the company had received a final report from the third-party commissioned to investigate the accounting irregularities, including its deferred posting of losses. He said the report, which includes “new revelations and recommendations on the future management of Olympus, will be taken into serious consideration by the company.” In November, Takayama stated that Olympus had no plans to reinstate Woodford, repeating the company line that he had been dismissed for differences in management style. olympus.com

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