Hon Hai in talks with Japan’s Softbank, India’s Adani on solar energy plan: Reuters report
Taiwan- based Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. ( ), the world’s largest contract electronics maker, has been in talks with Japan’s telecom services supplier Softbank Corp. and Indian conglomerate Adani Group over solar energy investments, according to a Reuters report.
The Reuters report cited sources familiar with the negotiations as saying that the three have been discussing the possibility of investing US$3 billion to manufacture solar cells and panels in India.
The report said the three companies aim to explore solar energy in India since Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has been gearing up to develop clean energy and has anticipated that renewable energy will create US$160 billion worth of business oppor- tunities over the next five years.
A source said in the Reuters report that Adani founder Gautam Adani, Hon Hai Chairman Terry Gou ( ) and Softbank Chairman Masayoshi Son have kicked off talks on the likely investment project for weeks.
The source said that the three could finalize the investment projects in the coming few months.
Before the talks with Softbank and Adani surfaced, Hon Hai announced plans in late June to team up with the Japanese partner and another Indian business group Baharti to set up a joint venture — SBG Cleantech — to penetrate the Indian renewable energy market, such as solar and wind energy.
Market sources said that speculation of cooperation among Hon Hai, Softbank and Adani in solar energy development has been circulating for some time.
In addition to the solar energy project, Hon Hai reportedly will work with Adani’s subsidiary Adani Enterprise to invest US$5 billion to churn out hightech gadgets, including tablet computers and smartphones, in India.
Hon Hai and Adani Enterprises are expected to build two plants in Gujarat and Karnataka in an initial stage of their investments, the sources said. The two partners could assemble Apple Inc.’s iPhone in the South Asian country.
In early August, Gou announced in a news conference during his visit to India that his group is planning to invest US$5 billion in India’s Maharashtra state over the next five years.
Hon Hai, also known as Foxconn Technology Group ( ), is one of Apple’s most important suppliers, rolling out iPhones and iPads for the U.S. consumer electronics giant.