Sharp set to fire more people

Sharp set to fire more people

TOKYO - Agence France-Presse
Sharp set to fire more people

A customer checks Sharp Corp’s liquid crystal display (LCD) television at a discount chain store in Tokyo, Japan. Sharp is considering a spin-off of its plant in Kameyama producing LCD panels and selling off operations of parts of home electronics. EPA photo

Japan’s embattled Sharp is considering cutting thousands of jobs in addition to its current plan of slashing 5,000 jobs to repair its disintegrating balance sheet, a report said over the weekend. As the struggling electronics maker decided to cut thousands more jobs, its main banks are likely to provide bridge loans of about 60 billion yen ($755 million) to shore up cash flow, the Mainichi Shimbun reported, without citing sources.

A separate report by the Yomiuri Shimbun said Saturday it is considering a sale of the land in western Japan where its key Sakai plant is located -- with a book value of 38.1 billion yen -- to institutional investors in a bid to plug a gaping hole in its balance sheet.

Sharp also plans to sell its building in Tokyo with the book value of 42.2 billion yen to its business partner Hon Hai, the Yomiuri said.

The reports came after shares in Sharp jumped on Friday following a frenzy of reports that said it would sell key operations and court new investment. On Aug. 17, the Nikkei business daily said Taiwan’s Hon Hai Precision wanted to double its planned stake in Sharp to 20 percent.

In March, the pair announced a deal that would see Hon Hai, which makes iPhones and iPads in China, buy 10 percent of Sharp, which makes a range of products including Aquos-brand televisions and office copiers.

The Nikkei added that Sharp is mulling a spinoff of a plant in central Japan, which makes LCD panels for smartphones and tablet computers.