crime

Olympus says it did nothing illegal in controversial deals

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Even if not illegal, it's highly unlikely the shareholders agree with these purchases...very very shady here, Olympus.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Transactions might be legal but defrauding the shareholders and releasing false numbers is 100% illegal

2 ( +4 / -2 )

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corporate_governance

Rights and equitable treatment of shareholder: Organizations should respect the rights of shareholders and help shareholders to exercise those rights. They can help shareholders exercise their rights by openly and effectively communicating information and by encouraging shareholders to participate in general meetings.

Interests of other stakeholders: Organizations should recognize that they have legal, contractual, social, and market driven obligations to non-shareholder stakeholders, including employees, investors, creditors, suppliers, local communities, customers, and policy makers.

Role and responsibilities of the board:The board needs sufficient relevant skills and understanding to review and challenge management performance. It also needs adequate size and appropriate levels of independence and commitment to fulfill its responsibilities and duties.

Integrity and ethical behavior: Integrity should be a fundamental requirement in choosing corporate officers and board members. Organizations should develop a code of conduct for their directors and executives that promotes ethical and responsible decision making.

Disclosure and transparency: Organizations should clarify and make publicly known the roles and responsibilities of board and management to provide stakeholders with a level of accountability. They should also implement procedures to independently verify and safeguard the integrity of the company's financial reporting. Disclosure of material matters concerning the organization should be timely and balanced to ensure that all investors have access to clear, factual information.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

If a payment happened to a shell company in the Cayman Islands, does anyone hear it? Only if it crosses a Woodford!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

687 million is reasonable? Are you kidding me? And in the Cayman Islands? This is so blatantly wrong on so many different levels that it is amusing. Follow the money and it will lead you to the truth, and most likely some wealthy board members....

3 ( +5 / -2 )

As long as the Olympus board says they did nothing wrong, the problem is not solved by any means.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Looks like neither Japan’s Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission or the Olympus's own investigation will reveal much, or have much incentive to reveal much, so it is up to the FBI. They seem to have a much better grip on the case...

2 ( +5 / -3 )

This has become a big issue with lots of discussion by people not involved and thus not likely to know the real details of the case, myself included. However, we should note that there has not been any court ruling finding Olympus guilty of any wrong doing, and we must assume innocence until proven guilty.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

So there you have it: he didn't resign because of the scandal or wrong doing, he resigned to stop the drop in stocks. Money speaks, and while clearly a lot of people are fickle and will keep dealing with Olympus once one person out of the lot of bad apples resigns, hopefully others will realize that it's just a facade and will stop dealing with the company all together.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

@gogogo:

I agree with your post, but TIJ (This Is Japan) where shareholders are not really considered as being that important. Maintaining outdated practices, arranging dodgy deals, siphoning profits and retaining Jurassic grossly overpaid directors is the prime goal of the dinosaurs that run business in Japan. Then and only then, if some profits are left it'll get reported officially and distributed to shareholders.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

It's very simple. The company just needs to explain what happened. Then it will be possible to judge. They can start with how and why they came up with the extraordinary fee structure for Gyrus, and then how they selected the three worthless Japanese companies recommended to them by a director/owner of all three, who shared their address and whose brother was on the Olympus board. And why they ignored all Woodford's questions when he raised them the first few times would be good. It is hardly surprising that there has been no legal verdict against them, two weeks into the scandal. But agreed, there may not be illegal actions at play here. We just don't know, because the company has not deigned to share any useful information with us yet.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Of course they did nothing illegal ... IN JAPAN! Massive kickbacks, bribes, corruption, money laundering etc are all NORMAL PARTS OF THE JAPANESE CORPORATE WORLD! Only in the rest of civilization are these things illegal.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Deny, deny, deny... Why can't Japanese companies understand that once big,bad, gaikoku gets involved this isn't the way to deal with the issue. I wonder how their shares will be after this comment? I would guess they would go down but I know nothing about such things. What a crappy company. I feel for the reg workers who will suffer because of their greedy managers.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

it's a typical nakama sekkai scam

since the fbi and other countries are on the trail of the cash to the caymans, maybe they will be able to trace it amd map out the individual nodes in the corrupt network, which undoubtedly leads into the olympus boardroom offices of those executives authorizing these so-called acquisitions and fees.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I don't see what's so wrong with this. It is because I have been in Japan for decades?

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

which undoubtedly leads into the olympus boardroom offices of those executives authorizing these so-called acquisitions and fees.

exactly.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

ubikwit:

" it's a typical nakama sekkai sca "

Guess so, but on a massive scale. Come on, scamming an amount to the Cayman islands that takes a good company from the black to the red? They just got too greedy.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If there is nothing illegal, why are the FBI investigating?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Typical Japanese gov't or industry response. Anything is OK as long as a legal or technical loophole can be found, but they totally ignore or dismiss whether it is morally or ethically right i.e. sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, "scientific" whaling, gambling, sex industry, kidnapping children back to Japan, etc....

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Couldn't agree more, Horsefella. For many of the elite, i.e. older men often from Todai and the such, reality, morals, and ethics are all subjective and are only applicable when it suits their own needs. Dealing with these people in the government, the private sector, and such is a real learning experience.

There is much that is good about Japan, but these men and their egos have to go.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

hoserfella -- you hit the nail on the head. And since laws here are deliberately written to be vague and with plenty of ambiquity -- with words like "make best efforts' and the like -- companies have lots of leeway in determining what is legal. Moral and ethics have little or no place in corporate Japan, and that should not be a surprise to anyone.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

@ hoserfella...I agree....you know what's up......thanks for telling the truth!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Maybe I missed this in the story, or a previous story, but I don't see a reference to the FBI investigating. I see that Japans SEC has begun an investigation, but thats it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Not too sure what to think about all this maybe Star Viking can help us out here? But also Smith has some good points, this all does sound like a cover up by Olympus IMHO.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Legal and moral are 2 different things. However, when you start differentiating between the two to justify your behaviour, you just know that isn't right.

Seems like someone could make some money teaching ethics to some of these business leaders.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Seems like someone could make some money teaching ethics to some of these business leaders.

Why? Nobody would show up to class.

It's the smaller businesses that have moral's and ethics, when a company gets to be the size of Olympus those ideals get in the way of making money.

Maybe I missed this in the story, or a previous story, but I don't see a reference to the FBI investigating.

Yeah you missed it, it was in a previous article.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Sorry, forgot the link, here it is....

<http://www.japantoday.com/category/crime/view/olympus-has-no-comment-on-reports-of-fbi-probe#comment_1108542 >

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The point about 'nothing illegal' is simply that nobody has been convicted of any crime yet. Therefore we shouldn't pre-judge. At this stage it seems utterly inconceivable that nobody will be convicted of any crime and I hope the relevant authorities in Japan, the US and the UK pursue their respective investigations to the fullest extent. Only then can we understand what really happened, and why. The company's position that they did nothing wrong, without offering any explanation, holds no water at all. The most charitable interpretation of that is they are admitting they are/were the stupidest men in the history of corporate Japan. Tempting though it is to believe that, somehow it doesn't seems likely - there must be more to it than that.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Wow - they legally siphoned off USD 700 million - I think they learned this from Carly Fiorina and Leo Apotheker's playbooks.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

****I am British and like the overwhelming majority of British I am not a Politician, in fact only about 40% bother voting in Britain. We like Japanese products and mainly believe that Japan makes a better product than other countries, I personally only buy Japanese cars made in Japan. Recently I decided to purchase a new camera and decided to buy Japanese, I paid top price and when it arrived 'Made in China' was stamped on the case !! When I read about the obvious and blatant feeling of corruption happening in this deal it saddens me. This British guy would live and respect the Japanese way of business however like most British people (not Politicians) would without doubt do exactly has he has done. I hope there will be an investigation by a lawful thinking organisation.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Hi zichi. I am not sure if you are Japanese, I have been to Japan many times, my daughter in law is Japanese. What I am actually saying is in England we take the view that any Japanese product is reliable well made and worth buying if a choice was necessary between a Korean or Chinese. Perhaps we must congratulate the propaganda makers in Japan because they have sold JApanese products well.

We also respect any man from England that has become a director in a Japanese product and therefore believe him in his allegations, many, many people here respect the Japanese for their word of honour, hence we believe the allegation being made.

I just hope the FBI do a good investigation and action will be taken.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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