Cerberus Expands Seibu Tender Offer in Push for More Board Seats

Cerberus Capital Management LP, owner of 32.4 percent of Seibu Holdings Inc., is more than tripling the amount of shares it is offering to buy in a tender offer to boost control of the Japanese rail and hotel operator.

The private-equity firm is seeking to purchase as much as about 12 percent of outstanding shares in Seibu, compared with the offer for 4 percent announced last month, company said in a statement in Tokyo today. Cerberus recommended executives, including former U.S. Vice President Dan Quayle and former U.S. Treasury Secretary John Snow, for Seibu’s board.

Cerberus, which oversees more than $20 billion, is offering to raise its stake to as much as about 44.7 percent as it seeks to change management at Seibu before an initial public offering. The New York-based private equity group led a bailout of the company with Nikko Principal Investments Japan Ltd. in 2005 and has already asked Seibu to accept three new directors before selling shares.

Seibu said last month that it is now “financially prepared” for the relisting, according to President Takashi Goto.

Cerberus has already proposed Hirofumi Gomi, a former commissioner of Japan’s Financial Services Agency; Masaharu Ikuta, former president of Japan Post, and Yuji Shirakawa, former chairman of Citigroup Global Markets Japan, to join Seibu’s board.

The Tokorozawa city, Japan-based rail operator was delisted from the Tokyo stock exchange in 2004 after misstating stakes held by shareholders, breaking exchange rules.

To contact the reporters on this story: Chris Cooper in Tokyo at ccooper1@bloomberg.net; Kiyotaka Matsuda in Tokyo at kmatsuda@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anand Krishnamoorthy at anandk@bloomberg.net

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