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Hon Hai reportedly helping Sharp to reenter PC market

2018/01/30 18:43:51

Taipei, Jan. 30 (CNA) Taiwanese manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. is helping its Japanese subsidiary Sharp Corp. return to the PC market by purchasing Toshiba's PC operations, according to the Nikkei Asian Review.

In a report on its website Tuesday, the paper said Sharp is considering buying Toshiba's struggling PC operations, including its Dynabook laptop brand.

Citing unnamed sources, the report said the two Japanese companies are currently in working-level talks and that speculations put the proposed deal at around 10 billion Japanese yen (US$9.58 billion).

Hon Hai, also known as Foxconn in the global market, is playing a critical role in Sharp's efforts to get back into the PC business, the report said.

Before Sharp withdrew from the PC market in 2010, it was making computers under the brand Mebius, along with other devices, but its bottom line was shrinking, the report said.

Since Hon Hai acquired a 66 percent stake in Sharp in 2016, information devices have become the strongest area of synergy between the two companies, the report said, citing Sharp president Tai Jeng-wu (戴正吳), who used to be an executive of Hon Hai.

As the world's largest contract electronics maker, Hon Hai builds computers for international brands like HP and Dell and has the expertise and procurement networks to efficiently manufacture large volumes of products, according to the report.

Sharp, meanwhile, is good at rolling out small and midsize liquid crystal display panels for gadgets such as computers and smartphones, the report said.

Sharp has also been putting a lot of effort into penetrating the TV and smartphone markets and reached its goal of selling about 10 million TVs last year, the report said, citing Tai.

Later this year, the company will launch smartphones with an advanced organic light emitting diode (OLED) display, he said.

Toshiba's PC business incurred an operating loss of 500 million yen in its fiscal year 2016 on revenue of 191.8 billion yen, as the company faced stiff competition from rivals in Taiwan, China and elsewhere, the report said.

(By Chung Jung-feng and Frances Huang)