Taipei--Terry Gou (???), chairman of Taiwan-based manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. (??), said Thursday that his company still has a chance to win a bid to acquire Japan's financially troubled Toshiba Corp.'s memory chip assets.
Gou said that no deal has yet been struck, so Hon Hai still has a chance to acquire Toshiba Memory Corp., the Japanese firm put up for sale to make up its losses resulting from nuclear power investment in the U.S. market.
Gou made the comments in an annual general meeting held at Hon Hai's headquarters in New Taipei after international media reported a day earlier that Toshiba has chosen a consortium consisting of the Innovation Network Corp. of Japan, U.S.-based Bain Capital Private Equity and the Development Bank of Japan as the preferred bidder in the sale of Toshiba Memory.
Right after Gou reiterated his ambitions to pursue the deal to acquire Toshiba Memory, applause erupted among more than 2,000 shareholders who attended the meeting.
The head of Hon Hai, known as Foxconn in the global market, said that the road to bidding for Toshiba Memory has been bumpy but he expressed confidence that his company will prevail, noting that his company is very persistent in its acquisition efforts.
According to international media, there have been concerns that if Hon Hai wins the bid to acquire Toshiba Memory, critical semiconductor technology of the Japanese entity could be leaked to China, as the Taiwanese firm has built a major production site there.
Gou has expressed hope in the international media that there will be a fair bidding process for Toshiba Memory. The media reported that Gou was referring to interference by the Japanese government in the bidding process amid its fear of technology leaks.
Meanwhile, Gou said that Hon Hai is planning to finalize its U.S. investment plan, coded Flying Eagle, at the end of July or in early August. Six U.S. states have solicited Hon Hai investment, while Gou said that he met with the governors of three of the states and will meet with the heads of the other three.
Gou visited the White House twice in late April at a time when Hon Hai has been in investment talks with the U.S. government. White House spokeswoman Natalie Strom said after the visits that Gou met briefly with U.S. President Donald Trump.
In May, Sharp President Tai Cheng-wu (???) said in an exhibition held in Taipei that his company and its parent company, Hon Hai, are planning to build a flat panel plant in the U.S.
In the shareholder meeting, a proposal by Hon Hai to issue NT$4.5 (US$0.15) in cash dividend per share for its 2016 earnings per share of NT$8.6. It will be the highest cash dividend paid out by Hon Hai in the company's history.
The payout ratio will hit 52.3 percent, also a new high for Hon Hai.
Based on the approved cash dividend proposal, Hon Hai is expected to issue a total of NT$77.98 billion in cash dividends for 2016.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel