• Kyodo

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Retail giant Seven & I Holdings Co. is expected to replace the president of its convenience store arm Seven-Eleven Japan Co. despite good performance, informed sources said.

Vice President Kazuki Furuya, 66, will be named successor to President Ryuichi Isaka, 58, at a board meeting Thursday, the sources said. Isaka will also quit as Seven & I director.

U.S. hedge fund Third Point LLC, which has a stake in the firm, expressed objection in late March to replacing Isaka, who has been president of Seven-Eleven Japan since 2009. Third Point is seen as an activist investor.

Third Point said last week it has urged Seven & I to reject nepotism in the appointment of its next chief executive officer, citing speculation that the current CEO’s son is in line for the position.

Third Point told Seven & I in a letter that it believed CEO Toshifumi Suzuki, 83, was attempting to steer his son, Yasuhiro Suzuki, 51, into the top position, and that such nepotism would be against shareholders’ interests.

The fund positions Isaka as a potential successor to the senior Suzuki.

However, sources earlier said that Seven & I had received no shareholder suggestions from the fund by a deadline last Thursday ahead of a general shareholders’ meeting in late May.

A panel of four directors, including the senior Suzuki, has been discussing whether to retain Isaka.

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