Toshiba-branded laptops may soon cease to exist as the Japanese technology major, which has already stopped production of desktop computers, may soon sell of its PC business (under which it produces laptops) or merge it with other companies.
According to a WSJ report quoting sources, the company is proposing a merger or a sell off to rid itself of unprofitable units after an accounting scandal earlier this year which forced the top management to resign. The company later admitted that it had illegally inflated reported profits at several business units for several years.
Toshiba, which might sell part of its semiconductor business to Sony Corporation, as per sources is already in talks with companies like Fujitsu and other non-Japanese manufactures to shed its PC business. Earlier, Fujitsu also said that it wanted to spin off its PC business, but it has not arrived at a concrete decision.
In addition, there is a speculation that Sony’s PC unit Vaio, currently controlled by an investment fund, might join Fujitsu and Toshiba’s PC unit to form a singular entity although no confirmation was received from Vaio. Recently, most Japanese electronics companies have largely exited the PC market, once lucrative business area for them. Hitachi and Sharp has quit the business but NEC continues to have a minority stake in its joint company with Lenovo Group and Panasonic which focuses on enterprise customers.
According to research firm Euromonitor, Toshiba has a 2.3% share in the global market for laptop computers and tablets, while Apple Inc. has 21.1% and Samsung Electronics has 13.2%.