Livedoor, a Japanese portal company offering many Yahoo-like services, has long been an underdog in Japan, an unruly upstart challenging the old guard and, generally, kicking ass at it. (intro and recap here)
Well, Livedoor’s in the news again. The crime? Basically Livedoor announced they were buying a company they already owned, and the Livedoor share price jumped up as a result.
From CrissCross: “According to prosecutors, Value Click Japan Inc, now called Livedoor Marketing Co, announced in October 2004 that it would turn a publisher, Money Life, into a wholly owned subsidiary through a stock swap.
“But Money Life had already been effectively controlled by the Livedoor group at that time because an investment fund, financed by Livedoor, had taken a 100% stake in the publisher, the prosecutors said.”
Many observers are convinced this is a tar-and-feather campaign by the established powers. This has resulted in, as you might expect, the typical denials of wrongdoing, panicky stock selloffs, political posturing, and obligatory apologies.