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On topic: Japan's turmoil in shareholders meetings

A collection of stories to catch up on the hot topic of the day

Overseas investors are requesting dialogue on zero emissions with major businesses including Toyota Motor.

Japan's series of annual shareholders meetings is underway, including those of Toyota and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group. Activist investors are pressuring for change in top management while others are focusing on boardroom diversity, especially when it comes to women. Investors also want to see companies do more to address carbon emissions. The Tokyo Stock Exchange's recent emphasis on share price and capital efficiency is also hardening investor attitude.


Shareholders to step up demands at Japanese firms' annual meetings

Toyota Motor's shareholders meeting in Toyota City, Aichi prefecture in June 2022. (Photo by Yuki Nakao)

Japan's largest listed company is not exempt from investor requests. European asset management firms have jointly submitted a resolution to Toyota ahead of its June general meeting. Read more.


Japanese companies embrace shareholder activism as never before

Many Japanese companies are facing domestic and international pressure to respond to activist shareholders while also improving performance. The upbeat outlook for Japanese companies to change their ways -- not to mention the weak yen -- has given global investors like Warren Buffett more reason to bet on Japanese stocks. Read more.


U.S. activist fund demands removal of 7-Eleven parent's chief

Seven & i Holdings has concentrated on its convenience stores while moving to trim other operations. (Photo by Kaisuke Ohta)

California-based activist investor ValueAct Capital has submitted a motion to force out the president of Seven & i Holdings and three other directors due to long-held grievances over operations at the Japanese retailer. ValueAct owned 4.4% of Seven & i as of May 2021. The action by ValueAct is its first move against the parent of 7-Eleven. Read more.


Under pressure, Canon and Toray to add women to boardrooms

Facing pressure from both investors and the government, Japanese giants Canon and Toray Industries plan to appoint women as board members for the first time in a step toward gender equality. Read more.

Japan to set goal of 30% women executives at top companies

The Japanese government will set a target of having women comprise at least 30% of executive positions at top companies by 2030, advancing a goal laid out by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida. The target would apply to companies listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange's blue-chip Prime market. Read more.

Record number of Japanese companies face shareholder proposals

A record number of listed companies in Japan are fielding proposals from shareholders pressing for a wide range of reforms. This comes as institutional investors are also voting in favor of the reforms. Read more.

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