Former Olympus CEO plans to expose scam at Japanese firm in a new book

Former CEO of Olympus Corp, Michael Woodford, plans to write a book about his experiences in the scam-tainted Japanese company and on the $1.7 billion fraud that some of its top executives perpetrated on the firm.

Woodford, 51, a Briton, told the media that he planned to publish the Japanese version of the book in June, followed by an English version later in the year. Woodford, who had worked for the Japanese maker of cameras and medical equipment for several years, was promoted as CEO in October last year, but sacked within days after he raised inconvenient questions about illegal payments made by the firm to little-known companies.

His sacking and the consequent demand for a probe by him led to a major churn in the company, with all the top executives being forced to resign. The Tokyo stock exchange even toyed with the idea of delisting the firm.

Investigators, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation in the US and the Serious Fraud Office in the UK, besides law enforcement and investigative agencies in Japan, are still probing into the Olympus scam.

Woodford, who made an unsuccessful bid to take over as CEO of the company once again, plans to attend an extraordinary general meeting of the shareholders on April 20 in Tokyo. ''This will be the first formal opportunity for all of the company's shareholders to question and hold its management to account,'' said Woodford. ''I am monitoring events at Olympus extremely closely.''

Six of the 11 directors, including Shuichi Takayama, the president, are expected to resign at the April meeting.