INCJ Not Planning Sharp Investment

Following Sharp’s announcement last week of its latest mid-term management plan (Sharp Secures Second Bank Bail-Out), there are reports that Innovation Network Corp. of Japan (INCJ) had been approached by the company in April about investing in a potential spin-off of Sharp’s LCD business.

INCJ is now reported to have said it would not make an investment because of concern that it would face opposition from Apple. Japan Display, which is backed by INCJ, competes with Sharp to supply panels for Apple products.

Other reports suggest that overseas firms, such as Samsung and Hon Hai Precision, may be interested in rescuing Sharp, though Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry is keen not to see Sharp’s LCD technology transferred to overseas firms. Samsung already holds a 2% stake in Sharp, while in 2012, Hon Hai and Sharp nearly formed a strategic alliance which fell through because the two sides could not agree on an equity price.