Japan government fund considers ¥300 billion Sharp investment to counter Hon Hai offer


A government-backed fund is considering investing around ¥300 billion in Sharp Corp. to assist its restructuring, raising the amount to counter an offer by Taiwan’s Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., sources said Tuesday.

The Innovation Network Corporation of Japan had been expected to propose an investment of ¥200 billion to ¥250 billion in the struggling electronics maker.

The public-private fund is apparently seeking to take a leading role in rebuilding Sharp, as Hon Hai, known for the Foxconn brand, has presented plans to invest around ¥500 billion, the sources said.

Sharp is planning to spin off its underperforming liquid crystal display business before accepting investment by the INCJ. The firm is also looking to ask for financial assistance from its main lenders Mizuho Bank and the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, according to the sources.

Sharp is expected to record a group operating loss for the second straight year in fiscal 2015 through March and needs to streamline its operations.

Together with its creditor banks, Osaka-based Sharp hopes to work out details of its restructuring plan possibly by the end of January, the sources said.