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Three battles in recent months have questioned how independent from management Japan's outside board members really are after nearly a decade of governance reform has sharply increased the number of independent directors. Governance experts say outside directors are only nominally independent if they have close ties to management or fail to give proper oversight. 3D, which owns more than 20% of Fuji Soft, has nominated four additional members for the company's nine-member board at Sunday's extraordinary general meeting (EGM), saying existing outside directors have failed to address years of inefficient capital allocation. The Yokohama-based firm defended its current board, telling Reuters in a statement that the independence of its outside directors "has been ensured with no conflict of interests with shareholders. JSF has a statutory nomination committee, but Strategic Capital said its inaction over the troubled practice shows the committee is dysfunctional.
TOKYO, Nov 29 (Reuters) - Nomura Holdings Inc's (8604.T) U.S. wholesale business has emerged as a profit driver despite some large one-off losses in the region that had dragged down the bank's earnings in the past, Chief Executive Officer Kentaro Okuda said. Nomura's wholesale division consists of the global markets and investment banking arms. Japan's biggest brokerage and investment bank has had a long troubled history in its attempts to expand overseas, including the acquisition of assets from the collapsed Lehman Brothers in 2008 which it later wrote down. Okuda said the wholesale business overhaul in 2019, which included cost cuts and scaling back of lower growth segments, has helped turn the business leaner. To help the business become more resilient to market swings, Nomura plans to boost equity, private markets products as well as advisory and wealth management businesses, he said.
TOKYO, Nov 24 (Reuters) - Japan's Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc (8306.T) said on Thursday it would buy the Philippines and Indonesian units of Dutch consumer finance company Home Credit BV (HC) for about 596 million euros ($621 million). The acquisitions will be made through main Mitsubishi UFJ banking arm MUFG Bank, Thai unit Bank of Ayudhya PCL (BAY) (BAY.BK), and Indonesian unit Adira Dinamika Multi Finance (ADMF), with the deal to be completed within 2023, the company said. PPF, which had been looking at selling or taking on partners in some markets for the HC business, said in a statement it was the right time to pass the baton. A Mitsubishi UFJ executive said in a briefing that the lender would explore further acquisition opportunities in Southeast Asia. MUFG Bank will hold 25% of HC Philippines, and ADMF will hold 10% of HC Indonesia shares.
TOKYO, Nov 24 (Reuters) - Japan's Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc (8306.T) said on Thursday it would buy the Philippines and Indonesian units of Dutch consumer finance company Home Credit Group BV for about 596 million euros ($621 million). The acquisitions will be made through Japanese unit MUFG Bank, Thai unit Bank of Ayudhya PCL (BAY) (BAY.BK), and Indonesian unit Adira Dinamika Multi Finance (ADMF), with the deal to be completed within 2023, the company said. Home Credit (HC) is controlled by the Czech Republic's biggest investment group, PPF, which was founded by late billionaire Petr Kellner. read moreAfter the completion of the deal, Bank of Ayudhya will hold 75% of the shares of HC Philippines and 75% of the shares of HC Indonesia. MUFG Bank will hold 25% of HC Philippines, and ADMF will hold 10% of HC Indonesia shares.
TOKYO, Nov 22 (Reuters) - U.S. private equity firm Carlyle Group Inc (CG.O) aims to enlarge its footprint in the Japanese automotive sector as the global shift to electric vehicles (EVs) shakes the industry's supply chain, its executives said. With the world quickly moving to EVs, Japanese auto parts suppliers are reviewing strategies that were traditionally tailored for combustion-engine cars, Reiji Terasaka, who heads Carlyle's Japan industrial team, told Reuters in an interview. The Japanese auto industry used to draw strengths from its decades-old keiretsu system - a hierarchical pyramid of equity-interlocked suppliers with automakers sitting atop and ensuring business security. Automakers might not be able to support all kinds of keiretsu companies anymore, Terasaka said, adding that he anticipated changes to how the keiretsu system operated. The private equity industry "has evolved over the last 10 to 20 years from where there was more of a focus on costs," Bernasek said.
TOKYO, Nov 21 (Reuters) - Berkshire Hathaway Inc (BRKa.N), run by billionaire Warren Buffett, has raised its stakes in each of Japan's five biggest trading houses by at least 1 percentage point to more than 6%, regulatory filings showed on Monday, sending shares higher. The move is line with Berkshire's statement in 2020 that its investments in the Japanese trading houses were for the long term and the stakes could rise to 9.9%. The news boosted shares of the five trading houses, led by Mitsubishi and Marubeni, which were up more than 2% in morning trade, while the benchmark Nikkei (.N225) index was nearly flat. Berkshire's increased investments in the trading houses come as it this month bought more than $4.1 billion of stock in Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing (2330.TW), a rare significant foray into the technology sector by the conglomerate. Reporting by Makiko Yamazaki; Editing by Jamie FreedOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
TOKYO, Nov 16 (Reuters) - Japanese chipmaker Rohm Co Ltd (6963.T) said on Wednesday it was considering joining a consortium led by private equity fund Japan Industrial Partners (JIP) to buy out Toshiba Corp (6502.T), as JIP works to consolidate its proposal. The Nikkei newspaper reported that Kyoto-based Rohm planned to invest up to about 300 billion yen ($2.14 billion) in the proposed 2.2 trillion yen acquisition of Toshiba, citing multiple sources it did not name. A Rohm spokesperson confirmed that the company was considering joining the JIP consortium for the buyout but added that nothing had been decided, including the amount of any investment. Rohm and Toshiba are both major manufacturers of power management chips, which efficiently control electric power in cars, electronic devices and industrial equipment. JIP has contacted several Japanese companies to join the bid for Toshiba, including utility Chubu Electric Power Co Inc (9502.T) and financial services group Orix Corp (8591.T), sources familiar with the matter have said.
TOKYO, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc (8306.T), Japan's largest lender by assets, on Monday reported a 70.5% slide in second-quarter net profit because of another one-off loss related to the sale of U.S. unit MUFG Union Bank. Mitsubishi UFJ, which owns about 22% of Morgan Stanley (MS.N), posted a net profit of 117.41 billion yen ($841.83 million) for the July-September period, against 398.4 billion yen a year earlier, according to Reuters' calculations based on six-month cumulative figures disclosed in a filing. The Japanese bank maintained its full-year profit forecast of 1 trillion yen, a 12% drop from the previous year when it posted a record profit. The outlook compared with an average forecast of 1.04 trillion yen from 12 analyst estimates compiled by Refinitiv. ($1 = 139.4700 yen)Reporting by Makiko Yamazaki; Editing by David Dolan and Christian SchmollingerOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
TOKYO, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc (8316.T), Japan's second-largest bank, on Monday reported an 8% increase in second-quarter net profit and raised its profit outlook as improved economic conditions have boosted lending. Sumitomo Mitsui posted a profit of 272.99 billion yen ($1.96 billion) in the July-September period versus 252.8 billion yen a year earlier, according to Reuters' calculations based on six-month cumulative figures disclosed in a stock exchange filing. For the full year through March, Sumitomo Mitsui revised its profit forecast to 770 billion yen from 730 billion yen, compared with the 753 billion yen average estimate of 13 analysts compiled by Refinitiv. Sumitomo Mitsui said demand for loans remained solid in Japan and in the United States. The lender also said it would buy back up to 4.4% of its own shares, worth up to 200 billion yen.
Japan's Mizuho reports 29.3% increase in Q2 net profit
  + stars: | 2022-11-14 | by ( ) www.reuters.com   time to read: 1 min
TOKYO, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Mizuho Financial Group (8411.T), Japan's third-largest lender by assets, on Monday reported a 29.3% increase in second-quarter net profit. Mizuho posted a profit of 174.67 billion yen ($1.25 billion) in the July-September period versus 135.1 billion yen a year earlier, according to Reuters' calculations based on six-month cumulative figures disclosed in a stock exchange filing. For the full year through March, Mizuho kept its profit forecast at 540 billion yen, compared with the 561.31 billion yen average estimate of 13 analysts compiled by Refinitiv. ($1 = 139.2100 yen)Reporting by Makiko Yamazaki; Editing by David Dolan and Christopher CushingOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
TOKYO, Nov 11 (Reuters) - Toshiba Corp (6502.T) on Friday cut its full-year operating profit outlook after a 75% slump in second-quarter profit - dismal results that heighten the uncertainty surrounding its prospects for a buyout deal. It cut its profit forecast for the year ending in March by roughly a quarter to 125 billion yen ($885 million). Kioxia Holdings Corp, a memory chip maker some 40% owned by Toshiba, has also said it would cut production by about 30% from in October. For the July-September quarter, Toshiba posted an operating profit of 7.5 billion yen ($53.2 million). That was far short of a Refinitiv consensus estimate of 36.9 billion yen from four analysts.
TOKYO, Nov 11 (Reuters) - Japan's Toshiba Corp (6502.T) on Friday reported a 75% slump in second-quarter operating profit and lowered its full-year earnings outlook. It posted an operating profit of 7.54 billion yen ($53.2 million) for the July-September quarter. The result compared with a consensus estimate of 36.9 billion yen from four analysts polled by Refinitiv. Toshiba, which is exploring options for a buyout, cut its profit forecast for the year ending March to 125 billion yen from 170 billion yen. ($1 = 141.6500 yen)Reporting by Makiko Yamazaki; Editing by David Dolan and Edwina GibbsOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
JIP, Chubu Electric and Orix will each invest 100 billion yen, the paper said, without saying where it got the information. A Toshiba representative declined to comment, saying the company could not "answer information about candidates, including co-investors, as it may undermine fair process". Investor focus could now turn to another potential bidder, state-backed fund JIC, which sources have said is also preparing a bid. The fund has been in talks with U.S. private equity fund Bain Capital and north Asia fund MBK Partners to form a separate consortium, sources have said. Differences over JIP's plan to retain Toshiba's management were a source of friction between the two, Reuters has reported.
TOKYO, Nov 7 (Reuters) - A consortium of more than 10 Japanese companies, led by the Japan Industrial Partners investment fund, has submitted a bid to buy Toshiba Corp (6502.T) for about 2.2 trillion yen ($15.01 billion), the Nikkei newspaper reported on Monday. The consortium, including Chubu Electric Power Co Inc (9502.T) and Orix Corp (8591.T), appears not to have obtained commitment letters from banks but is aiming to complete the lending deal by end-November if Toshiba accepts the bid to go private, Nikkei said. Japanese companies in the consortium will spend about 1 trillion yen, while multiple overseas funds decided not to join the bid due to expectations for low returns, the newspaper added. When asked for a comment on the report, a Toshiba representative said the company "cannot answer information about candidates, including co-investors, as it may undermine fair process". ($1 = 146.5400 yen)Reporting by Kantaro Komiya and Makiko Yamazaki; Editing by David Goodman and Bernadette BaumOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
TOKYO, Nov 7 (Reuters) - Sapporo Holdings Ltd (2501.T) investor 3D Investment Partners has reached out to the Japanese beer maker's five external directors seeking major changes in an attempt to improve its performance, the Nikkei business daily reported on Monday. Unhappy with Sapporo's low profit margins and return on equity, the Singapore-based fund has asked the five outside directors to postpone the announcement of a new business plan scheduled on Wednesday, among other requests, the paper said. 3D Investment Partners and Sapporo Holdings declined to comment on the report. In a letter to the directors dated Nov. 3, the fund noted that Sapporo Holdings had failed to meet its sales target during the past 15 years, and that its return on equity (ROE) averaged 2% in the past five years - far lower than rivals Kirin Holdings's (2503.T) 14% and Asahi Group Holdings's (2502.T) 11%, the Nikkei said. Reporting by Chang-Ran Kim and Makiko Yamazaki; Editing by Christian SchmollingerOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Differences over JIP's plan to retain Toshiba CEO Taro Shimada and his team were a source of friction between the two bidders, according to two sources familiar with the talks. Despite being selected as preferred bidder, JIP has struggled to secure enough equity commitments from potential partners, sources have said. It now looks set to miss a Monday deadline to deliver a firm proposal that includes letters of commitment from banks, sources have said. In late October, JIC expanded the size of its buyout fund to 900 billion yen ($6.11 billion) from 200 billion yen. Two of the sources said the expansion was not just for a Toshiba buyout but also aimed at other deals.
Qualcomm (QCOM.O) ended its $44 billion purchase of Dutch peer NXP Semiconductors NV in 2018 after failing to secure regulatory approval. read moreChina's regulators have declined to comment on the DuPont deal and have not provided a reason for the delay in reviewing it. One merger arbitrage fund investor, who declined to be named, said deals involving Chinese approval will be closely watched in the aftermath of the scrapped DuPont-Rogers deal. Shares of some U.S. companies with a significant footprint in China that are waiting to complete deals dropped on Wednesday as a result. Some investors cautioned, however, that the collapse of these deals hinges not just on whether Chinese regulators will withhold clearance but also on whether the acquirers are committed to the transactions.
FILE PHOTO: The logo of Toshiba Corp is displayed atop of the company's facility building in Kawasaki, Japan, June 24, 2022. REUTERS/Issei KatoTOKYO (Reuters) - Japan Investment Corp (JIC), a potential bidder for Toshiba Corp, has expanded the size of its buyout fund by 4.5 times to 900 billion yen ($6.11 billion), a spokesperson for the state-backed investment firm said on Wednesday. It faces competition from private equity firm Japan Industrial Partners (JIP), which other sources say is having difficulty securing sufficient equity commitments from potential consortium partners. JIC received approval for the fund boost from the industry ministry on Oct 27, the spokesperson said. Japan has seen more large-scale buyouts in recent years, and the expansion is designed to allow JIC’s private equity arm to handle such deals, he said.
NEW YORK, Nov 2 (Reuters) - The attorneys general of Washington D.C., California and Illinois will file a lawsuit in a federal court seeking to block grocer Albertsons (ACI.N) $4 billion dividend payout to shareholders on Wednesday, a source familiar with the matter said. Reporting by Siddharth Cavale in New YorkOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Oct 19 (Reuters) - Altria Group Inc said on Wednesday its unit has reached a $2.7 billion deal with Marlboro maker Philip Morris International Inc's (PM.N) unit to sell the U.S. commercialization rights for its IQOS heated tobacco products. Altria has received a $1 billion payment from Philip Morris and will receive an additional payment of $1.7 billion by July 2023 for a total payment of about $2.7 billion pre-tax, according to the statement. Separately, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday that Philip Morris is planning to raise its offer for Swedish Match AB (SWMA.ST), citing people familiar with the matter. Register now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com RegisterReporting by Deborah Sophia in Bengaluru; editing by Diane Craft and Stephen CoatesOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Spirit Airlines and jetBlue Airways logos in this illustration taken, June 21, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/IllustrationsOct 19 (Reuters) - Shareholders of U.S. carrier Spirit Airlines Inc (<SAVE.N>) voted in favor of JetBlue Airways Corp's (<JBLU.O>) $3.8 billion takeover offer, but face an uphill struggle getting regulators to approve their combination. read moreBelow are the key events of the takeover saga:Register now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com RegisterReporting by Nathan Gomes and Kannaki Deka in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta, Anil D'Silva and Sriraj KalluvilaOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
FRANKFURT, Oct 19 (Reuters) - Elliott Investment Management has taken a stake in Fresenius SE (FREG.DE), seeking to potentially break up the diversified healthcare company, Bloomberg cited people familiar with the matter as saying. Fresenius and Elliott were not immediately available for comment. Shares in the company, which is controlled by charitable trust Else Kroener Fresenius-Stiftung, were up 9% at 1202 GMT. Fresenius controls the world's largest dialysis company Fresenius Medical Care (FMEG.DE). Register now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com RegisterReporting by Ludwig Burger, Patricia Weiss and Hans Seidenstuecker, editing by Kirsti KnolleOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
JOHANNESBURG, Oct 19 (Reuters) - South African mobile operator Telkom (TKGJ.J) said on Wednesday bigger rival MTN Group (MTNJ.J) had terminated talks to buy the former in what would have created the country's biggest telecoms company. Telkom said it could not offer MTN assurances to enter into exclusive talks sought by the country's second biggest telecoms service provider. It withdrew the offer later only to come back last month with a revised offer asking Telkom to buy it out. "MTN terminated discussions... as Telkom was not in a position to provide MTN with assurances around exclusivity," Telkom said in a statement. The talks between Telkom and MTN were at an early stage and had not progressed to due diligence, Telkom said, adding that it had not received any binding offer from MTN.
Oct 19 (Reuters) - Super Apps Holdings said on Wednesday it would go public in the United States through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company, in a deal that values the Malaysian payments technology firm at $1.1 billion. Register now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com RegisterReporting by Niket Nishant in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini GanguliOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
The logo of Toshiba Corp is displayed atop of the company's facility building in Kawasaki, Japan, June 24, 2022. JIP's initial offer was below 6,000 yen per share, the two sources told Reuters, putting the value of a potential tender offer at less than 2.6 trillion yen ($17.5 billion). Investors have considered 6,000 yen to be a key threshold. During a strategic review last year, at least one global private equity firm told Toshiba's review committee that a deal to take the conglomerate private could be done at 6,000 yen a share or more. In Japan, the court-led rehabilitation of auto parts supplier Marelli Holdings Co Ltd - owned by U.S. private equity firm KKR & Co Inc (KKR.N) - has turned banks cautious about terms for financing leveraged buyouts, private equity sources said.
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