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Orkla clears the air

Orkla, one of Norway's largest conglomerates, is back on course after weeks of speculation that CEO Jens P. Heyerdahl could be ousted.

The company's board of directors gave its full support to Heyerdahl after an internal investigation exonerated the chief executive of improperly manipulating the company's stock. Some members of the board had previously accused of Heyerdahl of standing behind a discounted transfer of a large block of stocks to a secret buyer in order to deny the stock to other shareholders who were hostile to Heyerdahl. Orkla publishes a chain of newspapers, produces a wide variety of consumer goods and controls a large investment portfolio.