KDDI looks for smaller J:COM stake

Seeks to avoid FSA investigation of off-market bid

TOKYO -- Following the announcement of a Financial Services Agency examination of KDDI’s purchase of a controlling stake in MSO Jupiter Commnications, the telecom company is attempting to acquire fewer shares from Liberty Global.

KDDI had intended to buy Liberty’s 37.8% of J:COM for $4 billion, but the FSA began to look into whether the purchase, via taking over three of the U.S.-based cable outfit’s subsidiaries, amounted to an off-market bid that would require an open tender offer.

According to local media reports, KDDI is now negotiating to sell on enough of the stake to keep its holding in J:COM below the one-third level that would trigger the tender offer – even though this may mean giving up on its plans to take over management of Japan’s biggest cable network.