Toshiba dis­cusses op­tions as re­ports swirl about chip sale

China Daily (Canada) - - BUSINESS - By FANFEIFEI fanfeifei@chi­nadaily.com.cn

The Toshiba Corp said it is dis­cussing an op­ti­mum so­lu­tion for its semi­con­duc­tor busi­ness, af­ter me­dia re­ports said the tech gi­ant would sell a mi­nor­ity stake inits com­put­er­chip busi­ness to some bid­ders.

SK Hynix Inc, Fox­conn Tech­nol­ogy Group and Western Dig­i­tal Corp are among bid­ders par­tic­i­pat­ing in Toshiba Corp’s sale of a mi­nor­ity stake in its com­puter-chip busi­ness, ac­cord­ing to the­Wall Street Jour­nal, cit­ing peo­ple fa­mil­iar with the mat­ter. Toshiba de­clined to com­ment on this is­sue.

James Yan, re­search di­rec­tor at Coun­ter­point Tech­nol­ogy Mar­ket Re­search, said: “The bid­ders such as SK Hynix and Western Dig­i­tal hope to ex­pand mar­ket share and en­hance com­pet­i­tive­ness in the semi­con­duc­tor and chip in­dus­try, es­pe­cially the stor­age sec­tor.”

Yan added that Fox­conn ex­pects to di­ver­sify its busi­nesses and move into chip de­sign and man­u­fac­tur­ing to in­crease its prof­itabil­ity.

In Jan­uary, Toshiba an­nounced it would be split­ting off its mem­ory busi­ness into a sin­gle busi­ness en­tity by March 31 to drawthe at­ten­tion of pos­si­ble in­vestors. The move will lead to fur­ther growth of the busi­ness and max­i­mize the cor­po­rate value, said a state­ment is­sued by Toshiba.

Toshiba is con­sid­er­ing an in­jec­tion of third-party cap­i­tal, and will make an an­nounce­ment when spe­cific cap­i­tal mea­sures are de­cided, ac­cord­ing to the state­ment.

The Nikkei fi­nan­cial daily re­ported that Toshiba will sell a roughly 20 per­cent in­ter­est in the unit for about 200 bil­lion yen to 300 bil­lion yen ($1.78 bil­lion-$2.67 bil­lion) while re­tain­ing a ma­jor­ity stake.

In 2015, Toshiba sold its white goods busi­ness to Chi­nese leading home ap­pli­ances man­u­fac­tur­erMidea Group. It sold its med­i­cal unit to Canon Inc for nearly $6 bil­lion last year. The Ja­panese com­pany’s two big­gest busi­nesses are nu­clear re­ac­tors and semi­con­duc­tors.

Ac­cord­ing to re­search firm IHS, Toshiba has about 20 per­cent share in the global NAND flash mem­ory chip mar­ket, rank­ing sec­ond af­ter Sam­sung Elec­tron­ics which had a 35 per­cent share.

The Tokyo-head­quar­tered con­glom­er­ate is still re­cov­er­ing from a $1.3 bil­lion ac­count­ing scan­dal two years ago. Sell­ing a stake in its prof­itable mem­ory chip would help Toshiba cope with losses from its nu­clear arm.

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