Foxconn to buy most of Sharp

Two thirds of Japanese giant bought by Chinese manufacturer

Sharp buyout

Electronics manufacturing megalith Foxconn has reportedly bought two thirds of fallen giant Sharp, which could have major repercussions for the screen on your phone.

In its heyday Sharp was one of the most familiar brands on the planet, but the Japanese company has battled with the difficult international TV market, despite being number one in its home territory.

Media agencies Bloomberg and Reuters have both announced the sale, which amounts to 389 billion Yen - or around £3.5 billion / £2.4 billion, well short of the original $6.24 billion touted by Sharp when the sale was mooted back in February.

Sharp also holds a controlling stake in Pioneer, but represents a significant risk for Foxconn, a company that produces goods for some of the biggest tech companies on the planet.

The deal is significant because Sharp's panels - the screens on everything from laptops and TVs to phones - are among the best in the business. The company is one of three screen suppliers for Apple's phones, which are manufactured by Foxconn.

Slide away

Once the headline sponsor of English Premier League club Manchester United and a familiar sight in white goods as well and the living room in the U.S. and U.K. markets, Sharp's slide from prominence internationally has been exacerbated by the rise of huge electronics companies in Korea, and latterly, China.

A failure to corner the second television market and the slowing of solar power another key area of the company, as a major emerging technology has hit it hard.

Foxconn and Samsung already held stakes in Sharp, but it remains to be seen if the purchase can resurrect a brand that retains both familiarity and a sense of loyalty.

Via Reuters

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