NEC in talks with Lenovo on selling mobile phone subsidiary


Ailing NEC Corp. is in talks to sell its mobile phone subsidiary to Chinese PC maker Lenovo Group Ltd. as part of turnaround efforts, company sources revealed Friday.

The move to sell NEC Casio Mobile Communications Ltd. follows the subsidiary’s sluggish performance in the mobile phone sector amid strong competition from overseas rivals, including U.S. technology giant Apple Inc.

NEC has been in partnership with Lenovo in the personal computer business since 2011, and establishing NEC Casio Mobile Communications as a joint company also remains a possibility, the sources said.

NEC will include the sale in a business plan to be drafted probably in late April, according to the sources. The Kawasaki-based subsidiary was established in 2010 by merging the cellphone operations of NEC, Casio Computer Co. and Hitachi Ltd.