Toshiba CEO to step down later this year

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By Larry Banks

Toshiba’s Chief Executive, Hisao Tanaka, will reportedly step down this September along with several board members including Vice Chairman Norio Sasaki, in order to take responsibility for irregularities in the Japanese company’s accounting.

Toshiba CEO to step down over financial irregularities

The news comes as the Japanese company has hired a third-party committee to look at its book-keeping practices, and according to Reuters, sources say the probe focused on the role played by top officials.

Half the board was likely to be replaced at the next shareholder meeting in September, sources said on Wednesday, though they declined to be named as they were not authorised to speak with the media.

A spokesperson for Toshiba said the company has not yet made decisions on the matter and would wait for the committee to release its findings.

Japanese paper the Nikkei business daily, reported that Toshiba would announce Tanaka’s resignation next week when the report is widely expected.

The firm first disclosed its irregular accounting in April, two months after regulators ordered a report on past bookkeeping. It has not been able to close its books for the past financial year in the meantime, and has suspended its year-end dividend.

Sources also said the investigator’s main theory is that executives set overly aggressive targets in new businesses such as smart meters, due to worries about the Fukushima disaster on its nuclear unit, and that they encouraged the understating of costs and overestimating of revenue…

SOURCE: Reuters.

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