Posted by Harry on 31st May 2018
Just when it appeared the battle for control of Xerox had squeezed out the last ounce of drama, a new drama is about to take place. Fuji who own three quarters of the shares is to sue Xerox now controlled by the rebels Darwin Deason and Carl Icahn who installed John Visentin as CEO.
Fuji had agreed a £4.6bn deal with ousted CEO Jeff Jacobson who was forced out by the rebels following a legal battle for control. However Fuji stand by their deal with Jacobson and reject the new board’s scrapping of the merger. Reuters report that Fuji’s Kenji Sukeno as saying: “We are currently in talks with lawyers on the schedule for filing the lawsuit and plan to go to court as soon as possible.” Reuters says Sukeno said Fujifilm will point out through litigation that Xerox has no legal right to unilaterally terminate the deal and that the deal is in the best interests of Xerox shareholders.
However Xerox are now planning to put the firm up for auction to the highest bidder with Deason defiant over the situation. Print Business reports him as saying: “I have never seen anything like this. Every rock we turned over there another bad email, another bad text. We have had some significant conversations. These auctions in my experience run for 90 to 120 days. We set up the data room and get the companies that are interested into that data room. It takes a little time: say 90 days, maybe a little more.”
The issue is who will buy the firm that although is one of the biggest names in the industry has been overtaken by technologically advanced rivals. The rebels want a premium price and are reported as saying that if they don’t get it they will continue the business on its own. Whether Fuji accepts this remains to be seen, but expect a further instalment of this soap opera soon.
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