Jan. 18 - Olympus management staying for another three months despite over half being sued for mismanaging the company. Arnold Gay reports.
The management of Olympus is staying for another three months despite over half being sued for mismanaging the company. President Shuichi Takayama says this will minimise disruption to the company's operations, and give the board time to prepare for an extraordinary shareholders' meeting in April. (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) OLYMPUS PRESIDENT SHUICHI TAKAYAMA SAYING: "The executives mentioned in the lawsuit by the company should step down from their positions in a way that will not interfere with the operations of the company regardless of their personal opinions or opinions of the court." Takayama himself is among six of the current board directors being sued by Olympus for mismanagement over a $1.7 billion accounting scandal. Takayama says he would like to stay to help make things right. (SOUNDBITE)(Japanese) OLYMPUS PRESIDENT SHUICHI TAKAYAMA SAYING: "I would like to continue working and take responsibility for business decisions of great consequence that must be made up until the extraordinary stockholders' meeting." Olympus also says it would wait until the management overhaul in April before bringing in a potential strategic partner, signaling the firm is in no hurry to shore up its finances. A company-appointed panel reviewing Olympus' options for reform and restructuring has till mid-March to decide on new board candidates, in time for the late-April meeting. The accounting fraud has severely depleted the camera and medical equipment maker's net assets. But it has support from its major Japanese shareholders, who prefer an equity partner, to selling the whole company or its assets. Arnold Gay, Reuters