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Usen to buy Livedoor stake

Broadband company to tie-up with troubled Internet start-up

Broadband services company Usen Corp. confirmed Thursday it will buy Fuji Television Network’s 12.75% stake in troubled Internet startup Livedoor.

Usen plans to use the synergies between its and Livedoor’s Internet services and contents. The exact form of the tie-up will be decided by a joint corporate committee, which will begin work by the end of March.

Fuji TV will hold a board meeting soon to approve the sale. Net, which bought its 133.74 million Livedoor shares in May for ¥44 billion ($372 million), is expected to sell them to Usen for about $80.5 million.

In related news, the Tokyo District Court turned down the request of former Livedoor prexy Takafumi Horie and director Fumito Kumagai for bail. Both have been indicted for securities and exchange law violations.

The court did approve bail for three other Livedoor execs under indictment with Horie and Kumagai for issuing false financial information to hype Livedoor’s share price.

Usen is the parent company of distributor and film producer Gaga Communications.

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