Toshiba announces sale MOU with Bain Capital, SK Hynix

Sep 15, 2017, 00:21
Toshiba announces sale MOU with Bain Capital, SK Hynix

'The sale of TMC must promote further growth of TMC's memory business, and return Toshiba group to positive equity. Among them is Western Digital, the USA computer data storage company and Toshiba's partner in chip manufacturing, which expressed its discontent with the news. Toshiba claimed it would try to reach a definitive agreement with the Bain-led group by month's end, but the company also noted the memorandum is non-binding, leaving the door open for other bidders.

Without an agreement soon, it will be hard for Toshiba to gain by the end of the financial year in March, regulatory approval and hence the funds it needs to cover billions in liabilities at it US nuclear unit. After initially identifying Bain as the preferred bidder in June, Toshiba said on August 31 that it was in talks with three bidding groups and was struggling to reach a "definitive agreement".

This comes after Toshiba switched its interest to Western Digital, Toshiba Memory Corp's 50/50 partner in the companies' manufacturing facilities in Japan, when earlier negotiations with Bain floundered on payment schedules and fears that a deal could be held up as a result of legal action from WD.

Western Digital calls itself an industry-leading provider of storage technologies and solutions that enable people to create, leverage, experience and preserve data.

Western Digital claimed it has been "flexible" and "constructive" and submitted numerous proposals to address Toshiba's concerns, and noted "multiple courts have ruled in favor of protecting SanDisk's contractual rights".

Toshiba said its business partner Western Digital had been "persistently" overstating its rights over a memory chip unit that the Japanese firm is looking to offload, showing the two remain at loggerheads over the $18 billion sale. The company sought injunctive relief after Toshiba announced in June that the Bain-led group was the preferred bidder and it planned to strike an agreement by June 28. Toshiba is appealing the order. The company is seeking to undo Toshiba's April 1 transfer of its NAND flash memory joint venture interests to the Toshiba Memory Corp. subsidiary and prevent any subsequent sale without SanDisk's consent.

The move came as the troubled Japanese electronics and machinery giant and Western Digital Corp., its existing flash memory business partner, remained apart over the USA hard disk drive maker's future involvement in the management of Toshiba Memory Corp. if it wins the bidding race.

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