Western Digital set to buy Toshiba's chip business

One up The logo of Toshiba Corp is seen at an electronics store in Yokohama. The Bain Capital and SK Hynix group has raised its offer for Toshiba’s chip unit after Western Digital Corp had revised its offer. — Reuters

As reported at Reuters; A deal would mark an end to months of uncertainty for Toshiba, which is scrambling to sell its flash memory unit - the world's No. 2 producer of NAND chips - to cover billions in losses at its bankrupt USA nuclear business Westinghouse.

Bain and SK Hynix representatives were not immediately available for comment, while Toshiba declined to comment on details of the deal negotiations. The parties have already missed two deadlines by Toshiba's banks, which want a deal to pump $18 billion or more into the company to pull it out of negative shareholder equity and prevent it from being delisted. -South Korean group had said that Bain Capital and other entities in the group would take over INCJ and DBJ's investment until the legal spat with Western Digital is resolved while raising the price tag for Toshiba Memory Corp to 2.4 trillion yen, becoming a strong contender.

According to the report, Toshiba has accepted an $18.3 billion bid from its former partner. The board had been seeking to decide on the preferred bidder on Wednesday, people involved in the talks previously told Reuters.

Western Digital looks like it has won the bidding war for Toshiba's memory chip unit.

The 2 trillion yen ($18 billion) bid led by Western Digital Corp and US private equity fund KKR & Co had been in the lead, sources had previously said.

Apple, which uses Toshiba's NAND flash memory chips in its iPhones, is concerned about losing pricing power if Western Digital is running the operation, the sources said on Friday.

Some media are also reporting that Bain Capital-backed consortium has upped its offer in the matter to $22.3 billion. Earlier this evening in Japan, news of what could be announced officially in the days to come is that the Bain bid with SK Hynix and Apple is going to be the victor for Toshiba's chip business. Last week it said it was considering three competing offers including one led by Taiwan's Hon Hai (2317.TW), also known as Foxconn.

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