• Kyodo


Sharp Corp. said Thursday it will slash some 5,000 jobs, or 9 percent of its overall workforce, by the end of March through early retirements and other means to turn itself around after being hit by a slump in its TV business.

Sharp reported a ¥138.40 billion group net loss for the April-June quarter against a year-before loss of ¥49.28 billion, on ¥458.60 billion in sales, down 28.4 percent from a year earlier.

The company also expanded its group net loss estimate to ¥250 billion from an earlier ¥30 billion for all of fiscal 2012 ending next March.

It will be the first time the Osaka-based electronics maker has solicited early retirements since 1950. Sharp initially considered cutting around 3,000 employees, mainly in Japan, but decided to expand the number to accelerate its restructuring.

Sharp saw its biggest-ever annual group net loss of ¥376 billion for the year that ended in March.

To rebuild, the company has agreed to form a capital and business alliance with Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. of Taiwan and has started promoting cooperation efforts, including joint operation of an LCD panel plant in Sakai, Osaka Prefecture.

Hon Hai, better known internationally under its trading name Foxconn, supplies products to Apple Inc. and other electronics makers.

Radical Panasonic plan


Panasonic Corp. plans a radical downsizing of its headquarters workforce from 7,000 employees at present to just 150 as part of a drive to turn itself around following record losses last year.

The slashing, scheduled to begin Oct. 1 and aimed at speeding up its decision-making process, would leave its headquarters manned only by strategy and finance management specialists, sources said Wednesday.

Most of the workers at the head office would be transferred to other divisions, but Panasonic would also solicit voluntary retirements, the sources said.

The lumbering electronics giant posted a group net loss of ¥772.17 billion in the business year to March, partly due to massive losses from TV manufacturing operations. It has since started personnel cuts, and its total workforce had been trimmed to around 330,000 as of the end of March, down 36,000 from a year earlier.

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