Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. said it agreed Monday to sell its controlling 56 percent stake in Cable West Inc., Japan’s third-largest cable TV service, to industry leader Jupiter Telecommunications Co., known as J:COM.

The home electronics manufacturer will sell its 107,801 shares in the Osaka-based cable TV provider for 40.9 billion yen, it said in a joint news release with J:COM.

Cable West offers cable TV service in the city of Osaka and 12 other municipalities in Osaka Prefecture. The share transfer will take place Sept. 28, the two companies said.

“Through this transfer, J:COM is expected to increase its subscriber (base) from 2.23 million households to 2.58 million households, and its market share from about 30 percent to 35 percent,” the news release said.

Matsushita sold off its stake to concentrate on manufacturing cable TV set-top boxes and broadcasting equipment, the two said.

Matsushita also wants to devote more resources into “TV portal services” that allow viewers to access Web sites through their TVs, a Matsushita official said.

J:COM and Cable West, meanwhile, hope the deal will allow them to cut programming and equipment costs.

Matsushita has also signed a contract transferring to J:COM all Matsushita’s shares in five other companies, including J:COM Shonan Co., J:COM Chiba Co. and J:COM Kansai Co.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.