Sharp to trim base salaries as much as 2%, seek early retirement


Struggling electronics firm Sharp Corp. plans to cut base salaries by 1 to 2 percent from August through March next year in a cost-cutting effort to return to profitability, sources close to the matter say.

The plan, which its labor union has been informed of, comes after Sharp fell into the red again in the business year ended March 31, posting a net group loss of ¥222.3 billion ($1.8 billion) after returning to the black for just a year.

The Osaka-based company is also looking to cut winter bonuses to a level equivalent to one month’s salary, a half the previous year’s bonus, and reduce their family and business trip allowances, the sources said Wednesday.

Executive officers will have their base salaries cut by 5 percent, they added.

The pay cuts are expected to help Sharp lower labor costs by around ¥3 billion in the current business year through March 2016 as it continues to struggle with tough competition from regional rivals.

As for its plan to cut around 3,500 jobs in Japan through early retirements, Sharp will target employees aged between 45 and 59, the sources said.

After registering massive losses for two consecutive years through March 2013, Sharp reduced salaries and bonuses of both standard employees and executives in the 2012 and 2013 business years, but suspended the measures in the year to March 2015 amid signs that performance was improving.