Toshiba Receives Offers as High as $3.6 Billion for Chip Business Stake

Toshiba Corp has received a proposal as high as 400 billion yen ($3.6 billion) for a 19.9% stake in its flash memory business, with other offer as low as 200 billion yen, according to the person directly involved in the deal.

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Toshiba Corp has received a proposal as high as 400 billion yen ($3.6 billion) for a 19.9% stake in its flash memory business, with other offer as low as 200 billion yen, according to the person directly involved in the deal.

The Japanese conglomerate is looking to raise approximately 300 billion yen from the sale, source refused to  be named for the reason that he is not authorized to talk to the media and declined to be known.

A sale of that amount would help Toshiba offset a multi-billion dollar write down on its U.S. nuclear power business, which investors worry could eliminate stockholder equity.

Suitors for the Japanese company’s chip unit include competitors SK Hynix Inc and Micron Technology Inc, data storage firm Western Digital Corp and financial investors such as Bain Capital, according to the report.

Toshiba favors proposals from investment funds because it could settle a deal quicker than with industry peers that may have to ask permission from competition regulators before any acquisition, according to sources.

The company will consider not just the bidding price when choosing a bidder, but other conditions as well, a Toshiba executive stated.

A Toshiba spokesperson stated the company could not make a statement  on the  details of the sale process.

On Thursday, shares  of Toshiba decline 6.7% in Tokyo trade, a day after Mizuho Securities pointed to the potential market effect of Toshiba being demoted to the 2nd section of the Tokyo stock exchange or even will be removed from the list.

The Nikkei business daily early on Thursday also reported market fears that Toshiba could delay its 3rd quarter earnings announcement, without naming sources.

A spokesperson from Toshiba stated that the company would publish earnings on February 14 as intended.

On reporting earnings, Toshiba also intends  to reveal the writedown on its U.S. nuclear business that people earlier told Reuters could be as much as 700 billion yen.

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