Forbes: ”To Regain Trust, Toshiba Needs More Than Stronger Governance”

A pedestrian walks past a Toshiba Corp. logo.  

”Scandal-muddied Toshiba Corporation recently announced it was terminating its long-time relationship with Ernst & Young ShinNihon, its rubber-stamping auditor, and will hire PricewatherhouseCoopers Arata to replace it.

That’s a good if belated step to take if Toshiba is serious about stepping back onto the straight and narrow path that has served it so well for most of its 140-year history. Applause too for management’s attempts to implement a stronger governance scheme.

But these efforts alone are not going to bring about the necessary fundamental changes in management mind-set and corporate culture that enabled Toshiba and ShinNihon to conceal losses of $1.8 billion over a six-year period in the first place.

 Financial scandals happen periodically overseas too, of course—Enron and Lehman Brothers jump to mind. Nevertheless, the Toshiba scandal has a peculiarly Japanese hue about it that leaves awkward questions unanswered and a dark cloud hanging over the company that won’t be easily dispelled………”

The Board Director Training Institute (BDTI) is a "public interest" nonprofit in Japan dedicated to training about directorship, corporate governance, and related management techniques. It is certified by the Japanese government to conduct these activities as a regulated nonprofit. Read a summary about BDTI here, and see a menu of its services for both corporations and investors here.

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