Toshiba wants at least $8.8 billion for a major share of its memory business that the Japanese tech giant is looking to sell since last month, Reuters reports, citing sources with knowledge of the situation. The Tokyo-based company was previously looking to sell a 20-percent share of its memory unit, but it was prompted to part with a larger stake as its nuclear business in the United States continues to lose money. Industry sources claim that Toshiba is now even prepared to sell its entire NAND memory division that manufactures mobile chipsets.
While recent reports indicate that the South Korean semiconductor manufacturer SK Hynix already made a bid for a 20-percent stake in Toshiba's memory business, the Japanese company apparently isn't waiting for its suitor to increase its bid and is already prepared to listen to offers for the remaining shares of its memory chip division. The transaction with SK Hynix that's reportedly worth $2.6 billion hasn't been agreed on to this date. Apart from the Korean chip maker, other interested parties reportedly include various investment funds and other chipmakers. Micron Technology, Bain Capital, and Western Digital were all said to be interested in the company's NAND memory division.
Industry sources told Reuters that Toshiba still hasn't decided whether to sell a majority stake in its memory business or part with its most profitable unit entirely. Instead, the Tokyo-based tech giant allegedly decided to focus on the amount of money it can raise with the sale. Toshiba's U.S. nuclear business that's bleeding money is putting the company in a tough spot as Toshiba is unable to turn to equity markets to raise funding and cover for its losses due to a 2015 accounting scandal worth $1.3 billion. Due to that state of affairs, the Japanese conglomerate has little choice but to sell some of its assets. Seeing how Toshiba's NAND memory unit is by far its most profitable venture, it's also the one that can be sold in the shortest timeframe. Even if the company manages to sell its successful unit by the end of the quarter, it remains to be seen how it will cope with more potential financial problems down the road.