Hakuhodo Executives, Others Allegedly Involved In Games Bid-Rigging

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Officers of the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office’s special investigation squad enter Hakuhodo’s headquarters in Minato Ward, Tokyo, on Nov. 28.

Four more executives from advertising and event companies including Hakuhodo Inc. are suspected of involvement in bid-rigging linked to the Tokyo Games, according to sources.

Four others have already been arrested on suspicion of violating the Antimonopoly Law over alleged bid-rigging for pre-Games events, including Yasuo Mori, former deputy director of the Tokyo Games organizing committee’s Operations Bureau, former Dentsu Inc. executive Koji Henmi and executives from event company Cerespo Co. and TV production company Fuji Creative Corp.

In addition to the executives linked to Dentsu, Cerespo and Fuji Creative, the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors’ special investigation squad is also looking into suspected bid-rigging by the executives of Hakuhodo, ADK Holdings Inc., Tokyu Agency Inc. and Same Two Inc.

The special investigation squad suspects contract coordination discussions involving the seven companies were held at the organizing committee’s secretariat office in Tokyo and other locations.

Mori, 55, and executives from each company met at the secretariat office to discuss which companies would receive contracts for each venue.

The special investigation squad is questioning the executives, laying the groundwork for possible criminal charges.

As ADK voluntarily reported the violation to the Fair Trade Commission under the so-called leniency program, the ad firm is likely to escape criminal charges.

Hakuhodo, ADK, Tokyu Agency and Same Two did not respond to inquiries from The Yomiuri Shimbun on Monday.