• Jiji


Electronics maker Toshiba Corp. is considering selling two domestic semiconductor plants as part of structural reform measures for its chip business, it was learned Thursday.

Companies such as Taiwanese semiconductor foundry United Microelectronics Corp. are showing interest in buying the factories, informed sources said.

If the plants are sold, Toshiba would likely consider outsourcing chip production to the facilities, according to the sources.

The two factories — one in the city of Kitakami in Iwate Prefecture and the other in Oita — are run by Toshiba unit Japan Semiconductor Corp. They mainly produce semiconductors for controlling motors, demand for which is increasing on the back of the spread of electric vehicles.

No decision has been made on the two plants' sales, Toshiba said, indicating that there could be options other than selling them.

As part of the chip business reform, Toshiba announced in September a decision to pull the plug on its system large scale integration business, which has been struggling to generate profits.

The company now aims to strengthen operations, including power semiconductor devices.

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