CINCINNATI—Kayaba Industry Co. Ltd., a manufacturer of shock absorbers, will plead guilty and pay $62 million to settle charges in the U.S. Department of Justice's ongoing investigation of price fixing in the auto parts industry.
Tokyo-based Kayaba, d/b/a/ KYB Corp., is the 37th auto parts maker to plead guilty to conspiracy to fix prices in the DOJ's multi-year probe. Its settlement agreement with the federal government was filed Sept. 16 in the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of Ohio in Cincinnati.
According to the agreement, Kayaba/KYB conspired from the mid-1990s until 2012 with two co-conspirators to allocate the supply of shock absorbers they sold to their vehicle manufacturer customers and determine prices submitted to those customers.
Among the vehicle makers who were victims of the alleged conspiracy were Honda Motor Co. Ltd., Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd., Nissan Motor Co. Ltd., Toyota Motor Co., Suzuki Motor Corp. and Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd., which manufactures cars under the Subaru nameplate.
To date the DOJ has assessed more than $2.6 billion in fines from auto parts manufacturers who have pleaded guilty in the price fixing investigation. Also, 55 executives from those companies have been charged.