The word was that Foxconn, one of the largest contract manufacturers for smartphone components was mulling over buying the Japanese display makers, Sharp. Now according to Venturebeat, it seems that Sharp has agreed for the takeover and this will make it one of the biggest takeover of a Japanese firm by an outsider.
Foxconn has buckled up to pump in 650 billion yen ($5.8 billion) into Sharp, which is currently a loss making company known for its LCD displays. Foxconn has been one of the largest supplier for Apple and this particular acquisition will help them command a better position. The acquisition would come as a breather for Sharp which was reeling under heavy losses, making the Foxconn buyout a last minute rescue.
Gavin Parry, managing director of Parry International Trading explained how Sharp had the technology to compete for being an Apple supplier which would be something that Foxconn was immensely interested in. Additionally, Foxconn would now also have a better negotiating power and can throw Samsung out of the game when it comes to supplying parts for Apple.
Sharp has been in the TV business for decades but its recent investments in LCD and Premium TVs failed to reap benefits and instead it held back the Japanese giant. The company failed to spring back on its own legs even after two bailouts in the last five years.
Sharp saw an increase of 4% in the shares after the news of acquisition and so did Foxconn at 3.9%. The sweet part of the deal for Sharp is that it will get help for fixing the financial woes and also have access to the Foxconn’s unparalleled distribution network. We are witnessing many industry stalwarts in Japan being taken over, Sony sold off its Vaio division and even Nintendo underwent a paradigm shift in its policies to streamline its product and focus more on the profit making ones. Let’s hope that Sharp will be able to revive its business and keep innovating.
Update: WSJ now reports that Foxconn is delaying the signing of takeover agreement due to new details Sharp disclosed a day earlier. It’s not over till it’s over.