Panasonic has sold its sensor business to a Taiwanese firm for $250 million, Reuters reports.
The sale to Taiwan’s Nuvoton Technology Corp is part of a bid to boost profits and cut fixed costs by $920 million by the year ending in March 2022.
The loss-making semiconductor business has suffered in the wake of the US-China trade war. The Reuters article states:
Panasonic has already divested most of its chip business as it lost to more nimble Korean and Taiwanese rivals, and has shut down or shifted its manufacturing facilities to its joint venture (JV) with Israel’s Tower Semiconductor.
Its semiconductor unit currently focuses on designing power-management chips and sensors for smartphones, cars and security cameras. It sold part of the power management chip business to Japan’s Rohm Co this month.
The latest deal includes the sale of the entire JV, which is owned 51% by Tower and 49% by the Panasonic chip unit. The JV operates three Japanese chipmaking facilities.
Panasonic said the sale will not have any significant impact on its earnings. The value of the deal that Panasonic has announced excludes the amount Nuvoton would pay for Tower Semiconductor’s stake in the joint venture.
Nuvoton said in a statement the all-cash transaction was expected to close by June 2020, and would “increase Nuvoton’s presence in the global semiconductor industry through greater scale and volume of semiconductor solutions”.