Firms raided in bid-rigging probe

Investigators from the Fair Trade Commission raided more than 30 offices of some 10 firms, including Osaka-based Sharp Corp., on Tuesday over suspected bid-rigging on orders for highway electronic information boards.

Other companies raided included Iwasaki Electric Co. of Tokyo, Koito Industries Ltd. in Yokohama, Nagoya Electric Works Co. in Nagoya and Seiwa Electric Mfg. Co. in Joyo, Kyoto Prefecture, the FTC said.

The companies met to fix their bid prices and decide which would be the lowest bidder in supposedly competitive tenders for information board orders awarded by Japan Highway Public Corp. and the national and local governments, FTC officials said.