Monday, April 5, 1999

JAL’s top shareholder
may sell stake

Bloomberg News


TOKYO -- Japan Airlines Co.'s biggest shareholder, Eitaro Itoyama, said he's considering selling his stake in Asia's largest airline to a unit of Evergreen Marine Corp. of Taiwan for at least $259 million.

Evergreen Marine, the world's second-largest container shipping company and the owner of Eva Airways Corp., offered the most among eight bidders for Itoyama's 60 million shares, or 4 percent stake, Itoyama told Bloomberg News. Itoyama, who said he's "upset" with JAL, hopes to conclude talks with Evergreen by the end of next week. "The airline hasn't treated me decently as the largest shareholder," said Itoyama.

JAL declined to make Itoyama a board member, instead offering him an adviser's post on condition he give up his right to object to JAL management decisions at the airline's shareholders' meeting in June, he said.

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