Japanese electronics maker Sharp Corp yesterday said an executive of Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密), the world’s biggest electronics supplier, is to take over as president.
Hon Hai executive Tai Jeng-wu (戴正吳) is to become Sharp’s new president, replacing Kozo Takahashi, the Osaka-based firm said.
The company also said it suffered a US$2.3 billion annual loss last year and released no forecast for this year as it assesses the impact of its acquisition by Hon Hai.
Photo: Chen Jou-chen, Taipei Times
Sharp in March agreed to the buyout that is to see Hon Hai take a 66 percent stake for US$3.5 billion.
It was the first foreign acquisition of a major Japanese electronics firm and marked a watershed for the nation’s once mighty home electronics sector, which nurtured global brands, including Sony Corp and Panasonic Corp, but has struggled in the face of foreign competition.
Sharp said its net loss for the year to March swelled to ￥256 billion (US$2.3 billion) from ￥222.3 billion the previous year.
Sales fell 11.7 percent to ￥2.5 trillion, while its operating loss ballooned to ￥162 billion from ￥48.1 billion the previous year.
Sharp said it plans to release its full-year forecast to March next year as soon as the deal with Hon Hai is completed, adding that it is “difficult to precisely calculate” its impact.
Liabilities exceeded assets by ￥31.2 billion as of March 31, Sharp said.
The company said it can avoid the risk of fund deficiency with continued support from Hon Hai and expects the deal to close by the end of next month.
“While we find ourselves with excessive debt, this strategic alliance will not only bring capital, but also a powerful business relationship that could bring stability,” Takahashi said. “We are counting on considerable synergies.”
Japanese media said Sharp is considering cutting about 3,000 jobs, or about 15 percent of its domestic workforce, including at its subsidiaries.
Sharp denied the reports, but the Yomiuri Shimbun said the planned cuts are expected to target the solar power business and management positions at Sharp headquarters.
Additional reporting by Bloomberg
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