October 14, 2020

Japanese Casino Tycoon Kazuo Okada Cannot Return to the Board for 30 years

Tokyo District Court’s made a ruling to reject the return of voting rights in Okada Holdings Limited (OHL) to Kazuo Okada’s daughter. This resulted in the fact that the Japanese casino tycoon Kazuo Okada cannot Return to the board for 30 years.

Kazuo Okada Case Background

The court announced the decision on 14 July. And the background of this case is related to a 30-year Trust Agreement between Okada’s children – son Tomohiro Okada and daughter Hiromi Okada. Under the agreement, Hiromi granted her brother voting rights of her 9.78% stake in the company and its subsidiary, Universal Entertainment Corp (UEC).

Tomohiro, who has already held 43.48% of the stake in the company, plus the part granted by his sister, now is able to kick his father out of the board.

In response to the verdict, Kazuo Okada and Hiromi Okada also filed a lawsuit in Hong Kong against Tomohiro and the company. Hiromi claimed that she had been tricked into signing the Trust Agreement in May 2017. As a counterattack, Tomohiro filed a petition in the Tokyo court to insist that the agreement is valid. Eventually, the Tokyo court ruled that the agreement was valid in February 2019 and rejected their application to revoke the agreement.

According to the information provided by Okada Manila on behalf of its parent firm Universal, the Trust Agreement will “remain in effect for 30 years, with Tomohiro Okada having the control of OHL. As a result, it effectively prevents former Chairman Kazuo Okada from returning to the boards of both OHL and UEC, as well as its subsidiary, Okada Manila, within this period.

Kazuo Okada Hong Kong Lawsuit

At the same time as the decision in Tokyo came out, the High Court of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region rejected a request from Universal Entertainment Japan to prevent Kazuo rom transferring his assets in Hong Kong. Universal Entertainment is seeking compensation of US$620 million from its founder for alleged mismanagement. Kazuo Okada was accused of mismanagement that overspends the development plan of the integrated resort Okada in the Philippines.

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