Conville & Walsh are delighted to announce that Michael Woodford has been named the Financial Times Person of the Year at this year’s Boldness in Business Awards, following his dramatic departure from Olympus as President and CEO.
On 1st October 2011, Michael Woodford was unanimously appointed CEO of Olympus, the multi-billion dollar Japanese camera company, having worked his way up through the ranks for decades. Just two weeks after taking up the role, he was dismissed from the board. He had become the first foreign CEO to rise to the top of a Japanese company, and he had also become the first president to blow the whistle on his own business. Fast forward five months, and most of the board has resigned, its chairman arrested.
Soon after being appointed president, Woodford received reports that the company had invested huge money in completely unrelated and unprofitable businesses. But why would a camera company buy out a face cream company? Or a microwave dish company? And why had they paid such extortionate consulting fees to do so? As he dug deeper, he realised, to his horror, that there was a $1.7 billion hole in their accounts, and that he, as newly appointed president, was supposed to be signing them off. And worse still, the trail seemed to lead towards organised crime.
Offering a fascinating insight into corporate governance and an outsider’s eye on Japanese business, Exposure will tell the astonishing true story of Woodford’s time at the top of one of the world’s largest companies, and the corruption that he discovered there.
If you’d like to read more before the book comes out, you can read the latest article by Jonathan Soble, the journalist with whom Michael originally broke the story in October.
23 Mar 2012