Olympus has admitted to covering up massive investment losses since the ’90s with its large scale acquisitions by paying out exorbitant fees to advisors.
Investigators have discovered that the Japanese company’s acquisition of Gyrus Group PLC and three Japanese firms at high prices were involved in a scheme to cover up investment losses.
A statement to the Tokyo Stock Exchange revealed that the company poured over half a billion dollars in advisory fees on the Gyrus acquisition to cancel out losses that were kept off the books.
Olympus admitted the discovery, made by the committee set up to investigate the company’s highly scrutinised dealings, publicly in a statement just before the stock market opened on Tuesday, with a following share plunge of 29 percent to its lowest level since 1995 according to the Nikkei.
Ousted CEO of Olympus, Michael C. Woodford, played the tune of whistleblower when his questioning of Olympus’ past dealings lead to his dismissal as chief. This sparked speculation and interest from government and shareholders alike, with Olympus’ market value dropping by more than half since then, according to Reuters.