Friday, March 4, 2016

As Sharp as a Foxconn


It might cut your colon.

"Foxconn hesitates on $5.5 billion bid for Sharp" by Jonathan Soble New York Times  February 26, 2016

TOKYO — For a few hours on Thursday, it looked as if Sharp, the ailing Japanese consumer electronics company, had secured a $5.5 billion takeover from Foxconn of Taiwan, the giant contract manufacturer that churns out products for Apple and other foreign brands.

Then things took a left turn.

Foxconn unexpectedly balked just before the deal was to be sealed. The reason was that the day before, Sharp told its potential new owner that it could be on the hook for close to $3 billion in potential liabilities, according to a person with knowledge of the talks.

On Thursday, Foxconn said it needed to review “new material information” from Sharp before committing.

The surprise disclosure was the latest example of the huge challenges facing Sharp — which has lost billions of dollars over the last several years — and anyone who hopes to turn it around.

The door remains open for a deal, but Foxconn’s decision to hit the brakes in response, raises questions about what might be lurking in Sharp’s books.

Sharp’s board chose Foxconn over the government-backed investment fund, the Innovation Network Corp. of Japan, which had offered to invest a little less than half as much: 300 billion yen or about $2.6 billion. The fund said the real value of its bid was larger, however, because it would have been able to use its influence with Japanese banks to obtain more funding.

The contest was widely seen as a proxy for a larger economic struggle, one between government-led industrial policy and the forces of an open global market.

The Innovation Network Corp. of Japan has been trying to rescue Japan’s shrinking television and smartphone display industry — or at least keep it in local hands — by buying up display businesses and combining them into a single national champion....



Japan’s economy contracts

Japan stocking up on Mass. R&D

Japan indicts 3 former executives over Fukushima nuclear disaster

Nothing new there.

Anybody remember Saipan?

Sorry for droning on.

UPDATE: Forest Near Fukushima Is Now Riddled With Mutations

I'm sure life will thrive in a few years.