3 Olympus Execs Quit Before Sacked CEO Visits

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Olympus executives and board members are falling like flies as the company holds those who covered up more than a billion dollars in losses responsible, as reported by Japanese newssite Nikkei.

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Former Olympus CEO Michael Woodford

Olympus’ former Chairman and executive vice president, Tsuyoshi Kikukawa and Hisashi Mori respectively, have officially resigned as board members as well.

The company’s corporate auditor Hideo Yamada also resigned, after the three covered up over $1 billion worth of stale investments stretching back to the 1990s.

Olympus’ new president Shuichi Takayama claims current management will also resign once the company implements a recovery plan. According to former Olympus CEO, Michael Woodford, dismissing culpable executives seems to be the first step on the road to recovery. 

Woodford was fired from Olympus on October 14th, after he raised questions regarding gross payments to questionable businesses and bodies, which may include the Japanese mafia. Interestingly, the three executives resigned a day before Woodford is scheduled to confront the board for the first time since his harsh termination.

“I just hope that [the board directors] understand that the game is up…Have some shame, have some dignity, that’s what I want to tell them,” Woodford said to reporters outside Metropolitan Police Department in Tokyo.

 

According to Woodford, Japanese authorities are investigating three companies acquired by Olympus between 2006 and 2008, the fees paid to its deal advisors and the acquisition of tech company ITX corp, which collectively amounts to $780 million.

Woodford was not impressed by President Takayama’s explanation of the lost funds, saying it “was totally unsatisfactory.”

“We don’t know how big the [investment] losses were, we don’t know who received the money from Olympus and we don’t know who [the company] has been acquainted with.”

Takayama sent out a letter informing employees that a change to Olympus management will take place, but warns it will slow down the company’s efforts in overcoming its enduring publicity crisis.

Read: New Inquiry At Brand Tarnished Olympus Shares Down 50%

“We will strictly hold responsible executives, both past and present, accountable,” he said.

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