The US charged seven Japanese executives with price-fixing on Thursday in a long-running probe into illegal practices in the automobile parts industry.
Three executives from Mitsubishi Electric Corp were accused by a federal grand jury of conspiring to set the prices of starter motors, alternators and ignition coils sold to top US manufacturers and US-based Japanese manufacturers, from at least 2000 through 2010.
Another four executives from Hitachi Automotive Systems Ltd were similarly charged over price-fixing involving a number of parts sold to US automakers including starter motors, fuel injection systems and ignition coils.
Both groups of executives were alleged to have directed and participated in efforts with others in the industry to set prices and rig bids for supply contracts.
Each of the seven faces up to 10 years in prison and a US$1 million fine, with the possibility of doubling the fine if the gain from the crime or the loss suffered by the victim is seen to be higher than US$1 million.
In the same cases both Mitsubishi Electric and Hitachi Automotive pleaded guilty to criminal price-fixing charges last year, and were fined US$190 million and US$195 million respectively.
Over the past several years US justice authorities have fined 28 companies, mostly Japanese, more than US$2.4 billion in the ongoing probe into bid-rigging and price-fixing in the parts industry.
In addition, 43 individuals have been charged, and 26 have pleaded guilty and have been sentenced to one and two-year prison terms.
“Protecting US consumers from anti-competitive practices is our top priority,” Brent Snyder of the US Justice Department’s antitrust unit said in a statement.
Softbank Group Corp plans to keep a stake in the chip designer Arm Ltd, even if it sells a partial interest to Nvidia Corp, the Nikkei reported. The companies are negotiating terms, the newspaper reported, citing sources. Softbank might take a stake in Nvidia after it buys Arm, the report said. Nvidia and Arm might also merge through a share swap, and Softbank would become a major shareholder in the combined company, it said. The two parties aim to reach a deal in the next few weeks, the sources said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Nvidia is the
END TO SPECULATION: The hotel’s management contract has been extended, despite reports that it wanted to end its alliance with Hyatt Hotels over a deal with Riant Capital Singapore-based Hong Leong Hotel Development Ltd (豐隆大飯店股份) yesterday said it has extended a management contract to ensure the continued presence of the Grand Hyatt brand in Taipei, ending rumors that the two sides were parting ways. “We are pleased Hyatt is able to come to terms on the extension of the management contract of Grand Hyatt Taipei,” said Kwek Leng Beng (郭令明), executive chairman of City Developments Ltd (城市發展) and Millennium & Copthorne Hotels Ltd (千禧國敦酒店). Hong Leong Hotel Development is a subsidiary of Millennium, and both fall under the Hong Leong Group (豐隆集團). The Grand Hyatt Taipei (台北君悅大飯店), owned and built by
MOVING FROM CHINA? The article did not name the company, but Foxconn, Wistron and Pegatron were among firms chosen for a production-linked incentive plan in India An Apple Inc vendor is looking at shifting six production lines to India from China, which could result in US$5 billion of iPhone exports from the South Asian nation, the Times of India reported, citing people familiar with the matter who it did not identify. The establishment of the facility would create about 55,000 jobs over about a year, the newspaper reported, not naming the Apple vendor. It would also cater to the domestic market and expand operations to include tablets and laptops, the newspaper reported. Samsung Electronics Co and Apple’s assembly partners are among 22 companies that have pledged 110 billion
’WHITE BOX’: The open platform would give local firms access to Cisco’s cloud-based mobile network to develop 5G telecom equipment and tap into the global market The Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) yesterday introduced a new 5G “open lab” in collaboration with US-based information technology and networking giant Cisco Systems Inc to address the rapidly growing “white box” 5G networking equipment market. The open lab will be a platform where Taiwanese manufacturers can access Cisco’s cloud-based mobile network to develop their own 5G telecom equipment, such as small-cell base stations, network switches, modems and Internet of things (IoT) devices, a ministry statement said. The open platform would allow Taiwanese manufacturers to tap into the lucrative 5G telecom equipment market, which was previously monopolized by Nokia Oyj, Ericsson AB