Tokyo: Apple Inc. is considering an investment of several billion dollars in Toshiba Corp.’s semiconductor unit, Japan’s national broadcaster reported, raising the prospect that the struggling electronics conglomerate will get a much-needed cash infusion.
Toshiba has put its memory chips business up for sale to make up for a writedown of ¥716.6 billion ($6.56 billion) in its US nuclear equipment operations. An investment by Apple would keep a majority of the semiconductor operations under US and Japanese control and satisfy the respective governments, NHK said.
While Toshiba has been narrowing the field of interested buyers, there are also signs the process is being put on hold after joint-venture partner Western Digital Corp. warned a sale may violate a contract it has with Toshiba. An Apple bid would add another layer of complexity, given its large cash position and influence as the maker of iPhones. Toshiba’s memory chips are used in smartphones, personal computers and data centers, putting them at the heart of a shift away from hard disk drives. Bloomberg