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Fukuchi new head of NHK

Exec succeeds Hashimoto in post

TOKYO — Shigeo Fukuchi, a senior adviser to Asahi Beer company, has been selected as the next prexy of pubcaster NHK.

Fukuchi, 73, will be the first outsider in 20 years to take the post. He succeeds current prexy Genichi Hashimoto, whose three-year term has been marred by scandal, viewer rebellion and a subsequent drop in license fees.

But Fukuchi’s selection was not without its own drama. Two board members, Akiko Sugahara and Yukari Tamotsu, made public a letter to board chairman Shigetaka Komori complaining that he forced Fukuchi on them and suppressed all debate.

But Fukuchi won 10 of the 12 board votes, one more than the nine required for approval of his candidacy.

Fukuchi will take office Jan. 25 and serve a three-year term. A native of Fukuoka prefecture, Fukuchi spent his entire career with Asahi Beer, rising to the post of prexy in 1999 and chairman in 2002. He is currently a senior adviser to the company.

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