The Japan-based companies announced today that Sony will acquire over 34 million shares in Olympus through a third-party allotment to the tune of $645 million in cash. The deal, which both sides are calling a “capital alliance,” is designed to help keep Olympus afloat following a scandal from last year. The scandal surfaced when CEO Michael Woodford presented documents to the media alleging that the company had used odd accounting practices, payouts, and other financial dealings designed to cover up losses for more than a decade. The alleged fraud was at the time valued at about $1.7 billion.
Aside from investing cash in Olympus, Sony will partner with the company on a host of medical devices, including endoscopes. The joint venture will be established later this year, with Sony holding 51 percent ownership. The companies will also team up on digital camera components.