Japan’s government is so concerned about Toshiba’s NAND technology being transferred abroad – presumably to China – that it is trying to get an industry-government consortium together to buy the Toshiba chip business.
The $30 billion bid is from Hon Hai of Taiwan which has extensive manufacturing interests in China.
The government is apparently asking Japanese companies if they want to join in a public-private consortium to buy the Toshiba unit or if they will partner with an approved bidder to bid for the business.
The Japanese government would like to see a few dozen Japanese companies getting involved with each one putting in about a billion dollars in the hope of raising about $50 billion.
These companies would all be joined by investments from are the Innovation Network Corporation of Japan (INCJ) and the government-owned Development Bank of Japan.
Apparently Japanese companies are not too keen because of the huge and insatiable demands for capital of the memory industry. However Fujitsu and Fuji Film Holdings are said to have shown interest in joining a consortium.
It is being pointed out in Japan that Japan has a poor history in arranging these joint ventures.
Elpida, the Hitachi-Mitsubishi DRAM jv, went bust and was sold to Micron; Japan Display was created, five years ago, from the LCD businesses of Hitachi, Toshiba and Sony but has been unprofitable and had to have a further injection of capital last year; and Renesas, formed from the semiconductor units of Hitachi, Mitsubishi and NEC, was the second largest semiconductor company in the world when it was founded in 2002, but is now 14th. It had to be bailed out by the INCJ in 2012.