Sharp and Sony to Terminate LCD Joint Venture

Sony to Sell Its Stake in LCD Manufacturing JV with Sharp

by Anton Shilov
05/28/2012 | 11:24 PM

Sharp Corp. and Sony Corp. have announced that their joint venture relationship to produce and sell large-sized LCD panels and modules will terminate, and that Sony will sell its shares (representing 7.04% of the issued shares) in Sharp Display Products Corp. to SDP. Sony will get around $1.25 billion for its stake, whereas SDP will be co-owned by Sharp and Foxconn Electronics.

 

In July, 2009, Sharp transferred its LCD panel plant in Sakai City, Osaka Prefecture, to SDP, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sharp. In late December, 2009, Sony invested ¥10 billion into SDP in exchange for new shares issued by SDP to Sony (representing 7.04% of the issued shares of SDP) and, as a result, SDP became a joint venture company of Sharp and Sony as of the same date. In consideration for the sale of shares, Sony will receive cash consideration equal to its original investment of ¥10 billion ($1.25 billion) to be paid by SDP.

In light of the rapidly changing market for LCD panels and LCD televisions, in March 2012 Sharp sold 46.5% of SDP to Hon Hai Precision Industry Group (better known as Foxconn), the world's largest contract maker of electronics. Sharp and Sony agreed to amend the original joint venture agreement to provide that Sony would not make additional capital injections in SDP and that Sharp will be able to acquire 7% stake from Sony. After the agreement goes into effect, Sharp Display Products Corp. will be owned by Sharp (53.5%) and Foxconn (46.5%).

Both the sale of shares and the payment of cash consideration will be completed by the end of June 2012.