TOKYO (Reuters) -- Struggling automaker Mitsubishi Motors Corp. said Tuesday that it expected to raise 295 billion yen ($2.7 billion) from a planned issue of new shares, slightly above a previously projected 280 billion yen ($2.5 billion).
"Mitsubishi group companies have agreed to give us more support than we had expected earlier," a Mitsubishi Motors spokesman said.
Japan's fourth-largest carmaker said last month that it had won $4 billion in emergency rescue funds, much of which would be paid for by its main shareholders in the Mitsubishi group, to shore up its balance sheet and fix its operations.
Under the revised capital increase scheme, seven Mitsubishi group companies and Taiwan's China Motor Corp. would purchase a combined $318 million in preferred Mitsubishi Motors shares, $137 million more than the earlier plan, the spokesman said.
Core group companies Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Mitsubishi Corp., the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi and Mitsubishi Trust & Banking Corp. would buy a combined $1.18 billion in preferred shares as previously planned.
Bank of Tokyo and Mitsubishi Trust, both part of the Mitsubishi Tokyo Financial Group, will swap a combined $1.18 billion of debt owed by Mitsubishi Motors into equity, also unchanged.
The $4 billion package also includes $910 million of preferred shares, which do not carry voting rights, to be bought by J.P. Morgan Chase.
Phoenix Capital, a Tokyo investment fund with close ties to the Mitsubishi group, is also expected to buy up to $910 million in common stock for 91 cents a share -- compared with $3.69 paid by partner DaimlerChrysler four years ago.
If Phoenix takes $910 million worth, it would become Mitsubishi Motors' top shareholder with around 40 percent, while DaimlerChrysler's stake would fall to around 22 percent to 23 percent from 37 percent.
"We are still negotiating on the terms of the deals with JP Morgan and Phoenix Capital, with their payment due in mid to late July 2004," the spokesman said.
In May, Mitsubishi Motors vowed a return to profit in the business year starting next April through a restructuring that would see it close a plant in Japan and cut its nonfactory work force by 30 percent, or 7,600 people, in three years through March 2007.
Despite the plan, delayed for three weeks after major shareholder DaimlerChrysler backed out, Mitsubishi Motors' future remains uncertain as it struggles to repair its brand image, which is still tainted by a major recall scandal four years ago.
In what may be another blow to the three-diamond Mitsubishi brand, a transport ministry official said Tuesday that Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corp, already in trouble because of its own massive recall scandal, may have another 93 cases that may warrant recalls.
A Mitsubishi Fuso spokesman said the company was still looking into the matter and planned to announce any findings at a news conference on June 15.
Mitsubishi Fuso, in which DaimlerChrysler and Mitsubishi Motors hold 65 percent and 20 percent respectively, said last month that it would recall 170,000 vehicles after finding that defects had been concealed for the past eight years.
Mitsubishi Motors said that DaimlerChrysler may seek compensation from Mitsubishi Motors over the Fuso recalls.