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Toshiba shareholders approve NAND flash sale

by on30 March 2017

Turning flash into a load of old Tosh

Toshiba shareholders have approved a proposal to split off the Japanese company's prized NAND flash memory unit.

This opens the way for the sale of a majority stake or even all the business which should make up for the losses at Tosh’s US nuclear arm Westinghouse, which filed for Chapter 11 protection from creditors on Wednesday. Toshiba is putting that business up for auction.

The flash chip sale should raise at least $9 billion for half the company and Tosh said it believes the unit will be valued at around $18 billion.

A source with knowledge of the planned sale said that about 10 potential bidders are interested. Those suitors include Western Digital which operates a chip plant with Toshiba in Japan, Micron, SK Hynix and a team of financial investors.

CEO Satoshi Tsunakawa and other executives faced angry questions from shareholders after managers last year described the chip and nuclear businesses as core units at the conglomerate.

One shareholder was shocked that something which was supposed to be a company “pillar turned into a hole”.

Another moaned that Toshiba has become a laughing stock around the world and the management does not have a clue what is going on.

Toshiba expects to book one of the biggest losses in Japanese corporate history with a net loss of $9 billion this year.

Last modified on 30 March 2017
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