TCI Lambastes Japanese Government Decision

Apr 17 2008 | 12:57pm ET

The Children’s Investment Fund is decrying Japan’s rejection of its bid for a larger stake in the country’s largest electric utility, but the activist hedge fund says it will not stop agitating for change.

The Japanese government this week advised TCI to withdraw its request to more than double its stake in Electric Power Development Co. to 20%, saying the hedge fund’s larger role could adversely affect Japanese public order. EPDC, better known as J-Power, owns a large network of transmission cable and is planning a nuclear power plant.

“It’s a sad day for Japan,” TCI Asia chief John Ho said. “Hard-working Japanese people have been failed by the lack of leadership. Japanese assets will also be undervalued because legitimate capital is being turned away.”

He called the government decision “the real national security threat.”

TCI must respond to the Japanese government by April 25. Ho said his firm would not rush into an appeals process.

But he did say that TCI would keep a stake in J-Power—“the Rolls Royce of power companies”—and continue to agitate for better shareholder returns and value.

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