Wynn Resorts Drops Litigation Against Former Largest Shareholder Kazuo Okada
"Wynn Resorts Ltd. on Monday dropped litigation against its former largest shareholder, Japanese pachinko mogul Kazuo Okada," according to a court order signed by the judge in the case and viewed by the Wall Street Journal (March 12, O'Keeffe). The move brings the company one step closer to resolving a six-year legal battle. Okada played a key role in creating Wynn Resorts, initially investing $260 million for a 50 percent stake in the business. But his relationship with the company soured when Wynn Resorts forcibly redeemed shares owned by Universal at a 30 percent discount in 2012, and Wynn's board of directors subsequently voted to remove him as a nonexecutive director. Wynn reasoned at the time that an internal probe conducted by a former FBI director had found Okada to be "unsuitable," based on the company's own regulations. Okada has maintained that he was ousted for challenging some of ex-Chairman and CEO Steve Wynn's decisions.
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