Sharp looking to shed 3,000 more overseas

Kyodo

Sharp Corp. may cut 3,000 more jobs at its television assembly plants in Mexico and China in addition to its initially announced reduction target of 5,000, sources said Tuesday.

The struggling Osaka-based consumer electronics maker plans to transfer the employment of its overseas workers to its Taiwanese business partner, Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., which is set to buy those Sharp production facilities.

If Sharp cuts its envisioned 8,000 jobs, in and outside Japan, it would be equivalent to 15 percent of its total consolidated workforce.

Because the company is also looking to sell some of its operations as part of restructuring, the size of the personnel reduction could eventually expand to around 10,000.

“We are studying the best means with Hon Hai for liquid crystal display TV production,” a Sharp official said.

According to Sharp, there are about around 1,500 employees at its Mexico plant and more than 1,500 at its TV assembly plant in Nanjing, China.

Of the 5,000 workers whose downsizing the company has announced, around 2,700 will be cut through early retirements, while 1,000 will be shed through natural reductions, including age-limit retirements.

About 1,300 of the workforce will be transferred to a company that operates an LCD panel plant in Sakai, Osaka Prefecture. The company is jointly held by Sharp and Hon Hai, which is better known under its trading name Foxconn and supplies products to Apple Inc. and other electronics makers. Sharp is also in talks with Hon Hai to review their terms of agreement on a capital injection after Sharp’s share price dropped sharply.