Olympus Boots Michael Woodford as Chief Exec.


The struggling Japanese camera maker Olympus wanted a change agent. Just not this much change, evidently.

In a public ousting rare in staid corporate Japan, Olympus on Friday demoted its British chief executive, Michael C. Woodford, after only six months in the job, citing a management culture clash with the company’s mainly Japanese executive team.

"We hoped that he could do things that would be difficult for a Japanese executive to do," Olympus’s chairman, Tsuyoshi Kikukawa, said a news conference. "But he was unable to understand that we need to reflect a management style we have built up in our 92 years as a company, as well as Japanese culture."

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