Business / Corporate

Japan Display's first half net loss tops ¥100 billion on restructuring costs

Kyodo

Japan Display Inc. reported a group net loss of ¥108.67 billion ($996 million) for the fiscal first half on Wednesday, up more than tenfold from a year earlier, due to massive restructuring costs that saw its negative net worth also surpass ¥100 billion.

The red ink for the six months ended Sept. 30 compared with a loss of ¥9.52 billion in the same period last year.

The display maker’s negative net worth widened to ¥101.6 billion as of the end of September, compared with ¥77.2 billion three months earlier, and its capital adequacy ratio fell to minus 21.8 percent.

The company posted a half-year group operating loss of ¥35.62 billion — a deterioration from a loss of ¥14.46 billion a year earlier — on sales of ¥237.76 billion, up 11.0 percent.

“I feel very sorry for logging the red ink in the first half, but we finished our restructuring efforts in September and have made our business profitable since October,” said Japan Display CEO Minoru Kikuoka at a news conference.

The ailing display panel maker posted a special loss of ¥63.75 billion for overhaul steps including more than 1,200 job cuts and a write-down of idle facilities.

Japan Display has said it aims to secure a total of ¥50 billion ($460 million), including $200 million from major client Apple Inc. and up to $180 million from Hong Kong’s Oasis Management Co. by the end of November, after a bailout plan from a Chinese-Taiwanese consortium stalled.

“We have no problem with our financing, as we are talking with other investors, but the official announcement (on the rescue framework) may be delayed until December,” Kikuoka said.

He said the company expects business to turn around with solid display sales to Apple amid continued iPhone demand, adding that Japan Display will begin manufacturing OLED displays this month.

Kikuoka also said the company’s negative net worth would turn positive following the capital injections, and that an extraordinary shareholders’ meeting is being considered for January or February to approve the bailout plan.

Japan Display was established in 2012 through the merger of the display operations of Sony Corp., Hitachi Ltd. and Toshiba Corp. with support from the state-backed INCJ Ltd. fund.