Nov. 18, 2013, 7:31 AM
- Tesla Motors (TSLA) reportedly has been in discussions with South Korean firms LG Chem and Samsung SDI to help supply it with batteries for its electric vehicles.
- A multi-year deal Tesla has with Panasonic (PCRFY) doesn't preclude it from using other battery suppliers.
- An executive with Tesla notes it would take several years for any new supplier to be fully qualified.
Nov. 8, 2013, 3:27 PM
- Panasonic's (PCRFY -0.7%) 4K Toughpad tablet will sell for a whopping $5,999 starting next year, EnGadget reports.
- The device, aimed at "video production, architecture, design, photography and healthcare" professionals, sports a 20", 3,840x2560 pixel ultra hi-def LCD display, packs an Intel Core i5 CPU, lives on battery for a mere 2 hours, and weighs 5.3 lbs. It can reportedly withstand a fall from more than 2 feet.
- Labeling the price tag "premium" is an understatement, given the iPad Air and Surface Pro 2's $499 and $899 respective price points. However, the niche strategy may benefit from buyers who expense the tablet to their employers. In a market glutted with low- to mid-tier offerings, Panasonic's Toughpad has some chance of carving out its own tier.
Oct. 31, 2013, 2:17 PM
- Panasonic (PCRFY +3.8%) pulls the plug on its plasma TV production efforts. Manufacture will end in Dec. in the single remaining factory (2 have already stopped), and all ops will be shuttered by March. R&D will be diverted to OLED tech.
- Panasonic said it came to its decision "due to rapid, drastic changes in the business environment" and price pressure from LCD models.
Oct. 29, 2013, 9:25 AM
- Advanced Semiconductor Engineering (ASX) is likely to acquire Panasonic's (PCRFY) IC packaging/testing sites overseas, DigiTimes writes citing a local report. The Nikkei reported last week that Panasonic intended to sell of chipmaking plants and halve its workforce.
- Although the report identified ASX as the most likely buyer, a different Nikkei article reported that Panasonic had been in talks with Israeli TowerJazz.
Oct. 27, 2013, 4:07 AM
- H-P (HPQ) has sued manufacturers of optical disk drives for allegedly conspiring to fix the price of their products from 2004-2010.
- The defendants, which control 90% of the market, include Toshiba (TOSBF), Samsung (SSNLF), Sony (SNE), Panasonic (PCRFY) and Philips (PHG).
- The suits follows a long probe by the Department of Justice into price-fixing and bid-rigging. Hitachi-LG Data Storage (LGEIY), another of the defendants, and four of its executives have pleaded guilty to breaches of antitrust law, while the DOJ named H-P as a victim.
- H-P, which purchased billions of dollars of drives, is seeking unspecified triple damages and injunctive relief.
Oct. 23, 2013, 1:46 PM
Sep. 27, 2013, 4:47 AM
- As flagged, KKR (KKR) has agreed to acquire 80% of Panasonic's (PCRFF.OB) healthcare unit in a deal that values that business at ¥165B ($1.67B). The purchase will be KKR's largest in Japan.
- Panasonic Healthcare focuses on three core businesses: In Vitro Diagnostics, Medicom (IT equipment), and Biomedical.
- Panasonic will post a ¥75B extraordinary gain from the deal. (PR)
Sep. 27, 2013, 2:42 AM
- KKR (KKR) is about to make its biggest acquisition in Japan by agreeing to acquire 80% of Panasonic's (PCRFF.OB) healthcare unit for ¥150B ($1.5B), with an announcement expected today.
- KKR received preferential negotiating rights for Panasonic Healthcare, which provides digital medical record systems and equipment that measures blood glucose, following two rounds of bidding in an auction.
Sep. 12, 2013, 8:40 AM
- KKR may finally be about to break into the Japanese deal market in a big way, with the WSJ reporting the P-E giant could team with a government-backed fund to buy Panasonic's (PCRFY.OB, PCRFF.OB) health care unit for about $1.5B.
- The sale of the unit has drawn plenty of interest, but a source says KKR is in the lead after offering the highest price of any of the bidders.
- Japan has been a tough nut to crack for foreign buyout firms, but Shinzo Abe's reform efforts and a reborn stock market have the masters of the universe licking their chops. Should it close the Panasonic deal, it would be KKR's biggest investment in Japan since it opened its doors in the country in 2006.
- A possible roadblock is KKR's potential partner - government-backed investment fund INCJ. The two tried to team up to buy Renesas Electronics last year but it never worked out, and some question whether they can ever align their different investment objectives.
Aug. 28, 2013, 3:00 PM
- Panasonic (PCRFY.OB +1.8%) is finalizing plans to pull out of the Japanese smartphone business, Nikkei reports. It will end production at its factory by Mar. 2014.
- Panasonic will continue offering conventional cellphones, specialized smartphones for corporate users, and outsourced models for foreign markets.
- The company has apparently been approached by potential buyers like Nokia for its cellular base station business.
- The move comes after Japan's largest mobile carrier, NTT DoCoMo, adopted a new marketing strategy to offer larger discounts on smartphones from Sony and Samsung.
- Previous: KKR vies for $1.5B Panasonic healthcare ops
Aug. 23, 2013, 7:24 AM
- KKR (KKR), Toshiba (TOSBF.PK) and a consortium that includes Bain Capital are reportedly expected to make it through to the final round in the auction for Panasonic's (PCRFY.OB) healthcare business, which could attract up to $1.5B.
- Second-round bids are due in on Monday.
- The unit's products include blood-sugar monitoring equipment, hearing aids and systems for electronic medical records.
Jul. 18, 2013, 3:30 PM
Jul. 5, 2013, 7:58 AM
Panasonic (PCRFY.OB) will buy up to 13% of Slovenian firm Gorenje as it looks to increase its presence in the region. Gorenje is a well-entrenched seller of household appliance makers in the eastern part of Europe. The exact terms of the deal are contingent on the results of an upcoming capital rise by Gorenje.| Jul. 5, 2013, 7:58 AM
May 30, 2013, 6:51 AM
May 24, 2013, 5:08 AMKKR (KKR) and Carlyle Group (CG) are among several investment funds that are reportedly expected to bid for shares in Panasonic's (PCRFY.OB) healthcare business, for which the Japanese conglomerate hopes to raise up to $1B. Toshiba is among the strategic investors that could make an offer. The deadline for first-round bids is Monday. | May 24, 2013, 5:08 AM
May 10, 2013, 4:49 AM