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9401 - TBS Holdings Inc News Story

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Sector
Consumer Cyclicals
Size
Mid Cap
Market Cap £2.25bn
Enterprise Value £1.82bn
Revenue £2.36bn
Position in Universe 346th / 3866

Tokyo Broadcasting sets June vote on activist proposal to cut crossholdings

Thu 31st May, 2018 12:44pm
By Junko Fujita
    TOKYO, May 31 (Reuters) - Shareholders of Tokyo Broadcasting
System Holdings  9401.T  (TBS) will vote next month on a
proposal from a London-based investor to sell down the company's
crossholdings and return the resulting proceeds to investors.
    Asset Value Investors, which has a 1.7 percent stake in TBS,
has proposed the broadcaster sell 40 percent of its holdings in
Tokyo Electron Ltd  8035.T . But TBS has opposed this, saying it
sees no risks given the low book value of the shares of the
semiconductor manufacturing equipment maker.
    The vote on the proposal is on the agenda for TBS' annual
shareholders meeting in June, according to the company's notice
of convocation and a representative of Asset Value Investors.
    The vote comes at a time when activist investment is gaining
momentum in Japan, backed by the government of Prime Minister
Shinzo Abe that sees active engagement between firms and
shareholders as a valuable spur to economic growth. 
    Asset Value Investors (AVI) wants to particularly "convince
Japanese financial institutions that are shareholders of TBS to
support" the proposal, Stephen Givens, a Tokyo-based lawyer who
represents the activist fund, said at a media briefing. 
    Japanese financial institutions have pledged to reduce their
crossholdings in part to minimize the potential impact of shares
on their balance sheet due to market swings. 
    "If they don't agree with our proposal, that contradicts
with what they have been saying," Givens said. 
    Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp  SUMFGI.UL  and Nippon Life
Insurance Co  NPNLI.UL  are among TBS' top 10 shareholders,
owning a combined 6.14 percent of the broadcasting company.
    TBS' biggest cross-holding is in Tokyo Electron, shares of
which account for 35 percent of TBS' securities portfolio, AVI's
Givens said. 
    TBS is Tokyo Electron's third largest shareholder, with a
4.7 percent stake worth 158 billion yen ($1.45 billion) based on
the share price at Thursday's close. 
    According to Japan's governance code that came into effect
in 2015, firms are required to explain to investors their
rationale for crossholdings.
 ($1 = 108.8700 yen)

 (Reporting by Junko Fujita; editing by Malcolm Foster and
Himani Sarkar)
 ((813-6441-1840, junko.fujita@thomsonreuters.com, Reuters
Messaging:junko.fujita.reuters.com@reuters.net;))
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