TOKYO – Japan's Toshiba Corp. says it is considering a preliminary acquisition proposal that would take the technology conglomerate private.
Toshiba said Wednesday that it asked for more details on the proposal it received on Tuesday, was giving it “careful consideration” and would make an announcement “in due course.”
Trading in the company's shares was suspended.
The major Japanese financial newspaper Nikkei reported CVC Capital Partners was looking into acquiring the company for 2 trillion yen ($18 billion).
CVC is an international private equity and credit company, which has committed nearly $162 billion in funds, managing more than 300 investors. It declined to comment. It's headquartered in Luxembourg, and its main office is in London, according to the company.
Toshiba, founded in 1875, was long revered as one of Japan’s most respected brands, developing the nation’s first radar and microwaves, electric rice cookers and laptop computers. It also invented flash memory, the ubiquitous computer chips that store and retain data for digital cameras, cell phones and other gadgets. Toshiba no longer makes laptops and it has sold its computer chips division.
Toshiba’s sprawling businesses, besides nuclear power, include railways, elevators and storage for digital data.
Last month, Toshiba held a general shareholders’ meeting, and approved a proposal from Effissimo Capital Management, a major shareholder, to appoint independent investigators to look into possible interference last year with shareholders’ voting rights. Company management had opposed the proposal.