Thursday, June 30, 2011

Kyodo news: Hitachi may join LCD tieup

 Hitachi Ltd. is considering joining negotiations under way between Toshiba Corp. and Sony Corp. to integrate their businesses in small and midsize liquid crystal display panels, sources close to the deal said Thursday.

                                                                                                     Photo: Reuters/Kim Kyung-Hoon
A man walks past Hitachi's logo at an electronic shop in Tokyo October 29, 2009.

 The integration would give the three more than 20 percent of the global market share, surpassing Sharp Corp. to become the world's leader in the industry.
 Hoping to boost their international competitiveness amid the rapid growth in demand for LCDs in mobile devices such as smartphones, the three companies are likely to reach an agreement as early as next month, the sources said.
 The government-backed investment fund Innovation Network Corporation of Japan is expected to invest in the integrated firm, which could be launched as early as the end of this year.
 Hitachi, which produces LCD panels at a subsidiary's plant in Chiba Prefecture, had initially sought an alliance with Taiwan's Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., the world's biggest contract assembler and manufacturer of electronic components.
 But talks apparently fell apart after the two could not agree on the terms of the deal, the sources said.
 In 2010, Hitachi held 6.3 percent of the global market share of small and midsize LCD panels, ranking sixth in the world. Toshiba, the fourth-largest player, controlled 9.2 percent while Sony, ranking seventh, had 6.0 percent, according to U.S. research firm DisplaySearch.


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