Livedoor Chief's Peace Gesture to Fuji TV

04 April 2005

The acrimonious tussle for control of Japanese radio company Nippon Broadcasting System has taken an unusually genteel turn.

Young gun Takafumi Horie, ceo of online services company Livedoor, has called a halt to hostilities and invited Fuji Television Network, an NBS affiliate and ultimate object of his ardor, to join an equity alliance.

Over the last few weeks Livedoor has aggressively amassed more than 50% of NBS shares in a bid to exert influence on Fuji TV, in which the radio company has a 22.5% stake.

But Horie's plan was derailed last week [WAMN: 28-Mar-05] when Softbank Investment emerged as a white knight by becoming Fuji TV's largest shareholder through "borrowing for five years" a 13.88% stake in the TV company.

Horie's sudden conciliatory gesture, portrayed as a "priority to stop the battle", proposes that Livedoor agrees to cease acquiring Fuji TV shares. In return the TV company would refrain from selling NBS's core assets.

It is not known how Horie's offer has been received but talks are continuing.

Data sourced from Financial Times Online; additional content by WARC staff