Olympus lays out plans it hopes will quell scandal

OLYMPUS yesterday announced a plan it hopes will help put an end to the scandal that threatens to drag the business to its knees.

The endoscope and camera maker named six men, including a former Japanese supreme court justice, to investigate past M&A deals, which have been under intense scrutiny after record-breaking advisory fees were brought to light.

None of the six, including lawyers and an accountant with experience investigating governance at a bank, have had any previous association with the company.

The all-Japanese committee will look into $687m (£430m) in fees paid to a financial adviser over the $2bn purchase of British medical equipment maker Gyrus in 2008 – the biggest such payment ever – and the acquisition of three companies that Olympus, under chairman Tsuyoshi Kikukawa’s decade-long reign at the company, later largely wrote off.