A struggling Apple supplier will reportedly be given a lifeline in the form of a $723 million bailout from Chinese and Taiwanese investors.
Taiwanese panel maker TPK Holding Co, also an Apple manufacturer, and China’s state-backed Silk Road Fund will give the cash to Japan Display in exchange for a 30-50 percent stake in the company.
This would make these two companies the largest investors in Japan Display. At present, its biggest investor is the Japanese government-backed INCJ fund. INCJ owns 25.3 percent of Japan Display.
This deal has not been confirmed by the participants, meaning that it may not happen. Japan Display has reportedly been speaking with multiple potential investors, trying to secure a cash injection. It hopes to secure a completed deal by the end of March.
Japan Display’s struggles
Japan Display has been working with Apple for several years. However, it’s been hurt by multiple factors. One of these is the company’s refusal (or inability) to embrace OLED technology. Since this is the kind of display companies, including Apple, are increasingly gravitating toward, sticking with LCD hurts Japan Display. It has also reportedly been affected by diminishing iPhone orders.
Japan Display’s Chief Technology Officer Kazutaka Nagaok recently said that Japan Display must find other ways of bringing in money or the company will not survive. With this goal in mind, it has shifted one-third of its research staff over to smart sensor development over the course of 2018.