Cash-starved Japan Display seeks fund injection

TOKYO • Cash-strapped Japan Display is discussing an investment of more than 200 billion yen (S$2.4 billion) from three Chinese panel makers, including BOE Technology Group, Kyodo News reported.

Japan Display is aiming to agree on a deal by the end of March, Kyodo said, without citing its source. The other two firms are Tianma Microelectronics and Shenzhen China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSOT), Kyodo added.

Japan Display and rival Sharp once boasted cutting-edge screen technologies, but they have struggled in recent years to compete with more nimble Asian rivals.

Japan Display has been losing money for the past three years due to weaker liquid crystal display (LCD) prices and as customers, including Apple, shifted to newer organic light-emitting diode (Oled) screens.

The company has said it is seeking capital to begin mass-producing Oled screens in an attempt to catch up with South Korea's Samsung Electronics, and that it is open to partnerships with rivals including Chinese firms.

A source familiar with the situation said Japan Display would need several hundred billion yen to launch mass production of Oled panels.

Japan's state-backed fund INCJ owns 36 per cent of Japan Display, which was formed by combining the ailing display units of Sony, Hitachi and Toshiba.

Shares of Japan Display jumped as much as 10.1 per cent yesterday.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 21, 2017, with the headline 'Cash-starved Japan Display seeks fund injection'. Print Edition | Subscribe