Foxconn’s Takeover of Sharp Back on Track

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By Jacob Maslow

Takeover talks between Taiwan’s Foxconn and Japan’s Sharp Corp are back on track, after a last-minute disclosure over contingent liabilities caused the deal to stall last month.

Discussions between the two electronics companies are expected to be concluded this week, according to people familiar with the matter.

Sharp shares rose 6 percent on Monday following the news.

Foxconn chief executive officer Terry Gou is currently in Bangkok to participate in a business expansion meeting sponsored by Sharp.

Foxconn last month postponed the signing of a deal to acquire a majority stake at Sharp (TYO:6753), after it received new material information from the Japanese company. The delay came after Sharp’s board agreed to take Foxconn’s offer, estimated to be around $6 billion.

Sharp and Foxconn (TPE:2354) , however, declined to comment on Monday on the progress of the discussions.

Foxconn, in a statement released over the weekend, said that there was no fixed date to sign the deal as both firms continued to discuss the details of the agreement.

The Taiwanese company’s takeover of the Japanese display maker is said to be a strategic move for Foxconn to boost its position as Apple Inc.’s primary contract manufacturer. Sharp currently supplies liquid crystal display screens to Apple, while Foxconn does final assembly of Apple’s iPhones.

Foxconn’s takeover of Sharp would give the Japanese company the necessary funding to develop and produce organic light-emitting diode (OLED) display screens, a technology Apple is expected to adopt for its next generation of smartphones and tablets.

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