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Michael Woodford MBE

Former President & CEO of Olympus

Michael Woodford MBE is a British businessman who was formerly President and CEO of Olympus Corporation, making him the first non-Japanese person to be appointed as the company's CEO. However, he was dismissed after just four months in the position when he uncovered explosive financial irregularities.

"Exposing the Olympus scandal"

Michael Woodford MBE - speaker profile photo

In detail

Michael discovered that hundreds of millions of dollars had been transferred to mysterious accounts and when he brought it to the attention of his Chairman and board he was instantly sacked. Told that he should fear for his safety, he returned to London and briefed the Serious Fraud Office, starting a series of enquiries involving the FBI, SFO and the Tokyo Police. The scale of fraud was estimated to be $1.7billion, over twenty years. Michael began his career as a management trainee at Lucas Aerospace. After some time with Cadbury Schweppes, he joined KeyMed, the UK medical equipment division of Olympus. He made his way up the ladder over the next three decades, running their American and Russian businesses before becoming Executive MD of Olympus Europe.

What he offers you

Michael offers audiences his own insight into this dramatic story. He speaks about risk management, corporate morality and social responsibility providing audience members with real world solutions to real business problems.

How he presents

Michael's well delivered speeches are riveting, he is an outstanding storyteller with raconteur timing and invaluable business insight which make him a highly sought after speaker.


He presents in English.

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Speaking topics

  • The Olympus Scandal
  • Business Strategy
  • Overcoming Adversity
  • Social Responsibility
  • Risk

Books and publications

  • 2013


  • 2012
    Cliff Robertson Corporate Sentinel Award 2012
  • Financial Times/ArcelorMittal Person of the Year 2012
  • 2011
    Person Who Mattered in 2011, Time Magazine
  • Telegraph Briton of the Year
  • Independent Business Person of the Year 2011
  • Sunday Times Business Person of the Year 2011
  • Sun Business Person of the Year 2011

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