In an apparent climbdown Olympus has reportedly admitted it paid financial advisers nearly $700m relating to a 2008 acquisition, equal to the amount its fired CEO claims is well over the odds for such a deal.

Yesterday, Olympus chairman Tsuyoshi Kikukawa denied that the firm paid financial advisers excessive commission in relation to its takeover of Gyrus, a medical equipment firm.

Kikukawa made the comments in an interview with Japanese newspaper, the Nikkei.

However, in a contradictory statement released to the Tokyo Stock Exchange last night, Olympus reportedly acknowledged that it paid ‘$687m’ in advisory fees, the same amount cited by ousted chief executive Michael Woodford and contained in claims he has filed with the UK’s Serious Fraud Office.

Olympus’s spokesman in Tokyo could not be reached for comment this morning, neither by phone nor email.

However, Olympus confirmed to Amateur Photographer, by email at 3.30am today UK time: “We have disclosed a position statement… to Tokyo Stock Exchange in the morning Japan time. We are now preparing an English version which should be ready sometime today in Japan time.”

More to follow?