Idemitsu Kosan denies report of impending “business integration” with Showa Shell

Idemitsu Kosan Co. Ltd. has denied media reports published this week about its impending “business integration” with Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K.

“Today, certain media reported about a business integration between Idemitsu Kosan Co., Ltd. and Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K. However, we have not made any announcement in this regard. We are in discussion with Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K. regarding a business integration to enhance the corporate value of both companies, and we have resumed the discussions with our major shareholders. However, no formal decision has been made,” Idemitsu Kosan said in a statement in its website.

In its press statement, Idemitsu Kosan said that “We will make a further announcement promptly upon the occurrence of any event required to be disclosed.”

The Nikkei Asian Review reported on 27 June that the Idemitsu family, which owns 28% of Idemitsu Kosan Co. “will drop its opposition to long-stalled plans” with Showa Shell Sekiyu. The article said that the agreement hinged on demands from the Idemitsu family “to uphold the principles espoused by founder Sazo Idemitsu, along with two board seats reserved for family members at the merged company,” with the oldest son of Chairman Emeritus Shosuke Idemitsu to serve as company director. The story also stated that the boards of Idemitsu Kosan and Showa Shell are to meet in mid-July to make a final decision on the merger, with the transaction to be presented to shareholders for their approval within the year.

The merged entity will keep Chairman Takashi Tsukioka and CEO Shunichi Kito from Idemitsu Kosan and President and CEO Tsuyoshi Kameoka from Showa Shell, the article said.