Nikko Asset Management Co. will separate the roles of chairman and CEO at the firm in a move aimed at strengthening the Tokyo-based company's corporate governance practices ahead of an eventual initial public offering.
Takumi Shibata, a former group chief operating officer at Nomura Holdings, will likely assume the chairman's post, according to a company news release Thursday. If approved at the June 28 annual shareholders meeting, Mr. Shibata would become chairman effective July 1.
Charles Beazley, Nikko Asset Management's current chairman, CEO and president, will remain CEO and president of the firm, in charge of running its day-to-day business, noted Jo Nhan, a Hong Kong-based spokeswoman for Nikko. Mr. Shibata will focus on governance-related matters.
The decision to separate the two roles was in line with international best practice, according to the news release.
In the release, Mr. Beazley called the move an important step toward an eventual IPO where Nikko Asset Management will need “to meet the scrutiny of the international markets.”
Megumi Yoshizawa, a Tokyo-based spokeswoman for Nikko, said decisions have yet to be made as to the timing of an IPO.