Daily Management Review

Toshiba to sell its key business


Japanese corporation Toshiba has concentrated on sale of its memory chips manufacture, the key business of the company. The seller resumed negotiations with Taiwanese Foxconn Technology and Western Digital hard disk manufacturer.

FuFuWolf via flickr
FuFuWolf via flickr
Also, the Japanese concern continues to discuss the sale of part of its business to Innovation Network Corporation of Japan consortium, said Toshiba chief executive Satoshi Tsunakawa. According to him, the company is doing everything possible to close this deal by March 2018.

In the spring of this year, Toshiba shareholders at the general meeting voted to allocate a division for the production of NAND memory chips to an independent company, which was the first step to selling the business. The Japanese corporation hopes that the cost of the entire unit will be estimated at about $ 18 billion.

The conglomerate put the key business to the auction on the background of the growing losses of Westinghouse, the American division of Toshiba, which is engaged in nuclear energy. The division has filed an application for bankruptcy in accordance with Chapter 11 of the US Bankruptcy Code. Toshiba's losses related to the activities of Westinghouse Electric have reached almost $ 7 billion.

The semiconductor business of Toshiba is the second largest in the world. According to the analytical agency IHS, Toshiba controls 20.4% of the world memory market NAND flash in terms of revenue, being behind only Samsung Electronics with a share of 34.9%.

The annual turnover of the unit sold is about $ 7.5 billion. This business forms 81% of the company's profits. Toshiba is hurrying to conclude a deal and raise funds by the end of March 2017, as otherwise losses on the fiscal year will exceed the company's total assets. This may end with exclusion of shares from the Tokyo Stock Exchange (Tokyo Stock Exchange, TSE).

It was previously reported that SK Hynix Inc., Foxconn Technology Group., Western Digital Corp and Micron Technology Inc. expressed interest in buying Toshiba’s semiconductor unit. Among them, there were direct investment funds Bain Capital, Silver Lake Partners and KKR & Co.

Japanese television channel NHK reported that Apple and Amazon also expressed a desire to buy out Toshiba units for the production of microchips. According to the media, Apple is ready to spend several billion dollars to purchase a 30% share in Toshiba Memory.

Position of the Japanese authorities remains the main obstacle to purchase Toshiba’s semiconductor production. Under Japanese law, all transactions related to the transfer of significant Japanese technologies to foreign companies are blocked by the government. To obtain permission for Tokyo to purchase the production of chips from Toshiba, the Taiwanese company Foxconn called for its partner, Japanese corporation Sharp.

source: reuters.com

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