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Sony to invest $642 million in Olympus

  • Sony is set to approve a plan this week to invest $642 million in ailing camera and medical equipment maker Olympus.

    The move would make Sony its biggest shareholder with a stake of around 10 percent.

    Sony will set up a joint business with Olympus to develop new medical equipment, and will send an executive to join its board of directors next year.

    According to industry analysts, Olympus may prefer a capital injection from Sony rather than offers from rivals such as Terumo and Fujifilm in a bid to retain its independence.

    The company is struggling to recover from a $1.7 billion accounting fraud scandal uncovered last year by its then CEO, Michael Woodford.

    Olympus was forced to correct years of accounts, which in turned weakened its balance sheets.