Report: Sharp, Lenovo in TV joint venture talks

Ailing Japanese electronics giant is said to be discussing the possibility of selling its Nanjing TV assembly plant to Lenovo, and partner up to promote its Aquos TVs in China.
Written by Ellyne Phneah, Contributor

Sharp may sell its TV assembly plant in China to Lenovo, and start a joint venture with the PC maker to promote TV sales in China as it looks to bolster its finances.

Citing Nikkei, Bloomberg reported Thursday both companies are in end-stage talks over Sharp's liquid crystal display (LCD) TV assembly plant in Nanjing being transferred to its Chinese counterpart by end 2013.

Sharp and Lenovo may also start a joint venture to promote sales of Sharp's Aquos TVs in China, and possibly expand the collaboration to Southeast Asia and Latin America, it said.

The Aquos TV maker is also in talks with Taiwan's Wistron Corporation for the sale of another TV plant in Malaysia, Bloomberg added. Sharp may raise about 30 billion yen (US$338.4 million) from the sale of plants.

However, when contacted by the news agency, a Sharp spokesperson said the company is not the source of information for the report.

Sharp is also forecasting a net loss of 450 billion yen (US$5.07 billion) for the year ending Mar. 31, 2013, in what will be the company's biggest loss, according to the report.

This is the latest effort by the ailing Japanese electronics company to revive its fortunes. Earlier this month, Sharp was reportedly studying plans to expand its capital base by more than US$1.15 billion, which could include a public offering and subordinated loans. In December, Sharp said it has reached a partnership deal with U.S. chipmaker Qualcomm, which will invest up to US$120 million to jointly develop and commercialize display panels.

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