Sony will apparently invest 100 billion yen (£665m) in a new joint venture with Sharp in order to keep the cost of LCD panels down.

The two companies have long-announced they will work together in a joint venture to help the LCD industry, with Sony securing the supply for its TVs and Sharp getting a partner to help reduce the cost of setting up a new manufacturing plant.

Although the deal has rumbled on for 18 months the financial details have yet to emerge, but Nikkei Daily News has revealed Sony's proposed stake.

Increased investment

The initial investment will likely be around 50 billion yen (£317m) but will then climb during the course of the deal, although how the investment will be split between Sony and Sharp has yet to be decided.

The demand for LCD TVs is set to return to growth this year, with consumers enjoying the fallings costs of the panels, so the new Japanese plant is set to help meet the increased supply.

It will be a 10G plant (10th generation) which means the LCD glass handled inside will be much larger than usual, and can more cost effectively be cut down into smaller panels for use in TVs.

Via Reuters