TOKYO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Hibiki Path Advisors is a Singapore-based asset management firm that manages funds in Japan and abroad with a long-term perspective. Through the management of client assets, Hibiki holds shares in Ihara Science Corporation (hereinafter referred to as “Ihara Science” and “the Company”)
On February 8, 2023, EN・AI・MU・Corporation announced a tender offer (TOB) for the Company. This is positioned as an MBO (Management Buyout) by the company’s Chairman, Tokuo Nakano, the company’s representative director and Chairman of the board (hereinafter referred to as “Chairman Nakano”). Hibiki Path Advisors has held shares in the company since 2017, and as a long-term shareholder, we have supported the company’s growth and are grateful for the relationship.
Considering the drastic changes in the business environment and structural changes in the capital markets, we would like to express our sincere respect for the recent decision by Chairman Nakano to carry out the MBO with an ambitious approach towards further growth. The current Chairman, Nakano, became president in 1999 and saved the company from the brink of bankruptcy through his tireless efforts. We have a strong admiration for his commitment to Ihara Science and his determination to address the essential issues without being bound by the technicalities of being listed or unlisted. We believe that other listed companies’ management has a lot to learn from Chairman Nakano’s strong decision-making ability seeking what is best for Ihara Science to become the “World’s Number One Piping Company”.
However, Hibiki is of the opinion that the TOB price of 2,980 yen under the MBO does not fully reflect the intrinsic value of the company and we have sent a letter to the company’s board of directors who recommended all shareholders to tender at this price. We would like the board of directors and the management to consider our view. We are hereby publicizing this letter as we would also like other shareholders to consider these views independently and utilize it in your respective discussions with the management of the company.
(Letter to Ihara Science Corporation on 16 February 2023)