Toshiba Corporation (aka Westinghouse) is withdrawing from the nuclear power construction business… Captains of Toshiba and Westinghouse are abandoning their nuclear Titanic sunk on economic iceberg!!!!!
Toshiba Corp. will cease taking orders related to the building of nuclear power stations, sources said Saturday, in a move that would effectively mark its withdrawal from the nuclear plant construction business.
The news comes amid reports Toshiba’s chairman may resign over the massive write-down that has doomed the company’s U.S. nuclear business.
The multinational conglomerate said Friday it will review its nuclear operations and spin off its chip business to raise funds in a bid to cover an expected asset impairment loss of up to ¥700 billion ($6.08 billion).
After Toshiba ceases taking new orders, it will focus on maintenance and decommissioning operations, according to the sources.
The company will continue work on four nuclear plants under construction in the United States that are expected to be completed by 2020.
The Japanese industrial conglomerate may announce company chairman Shigenori Shiga’s resignation as soon as Feb. 14, when it reports its April-December financial results, the sources also said.
Shiga once served as president of the U.S. nuclear unit, Westinghouse Electric Co., which Toshiba has said could face a multibillion-dollar loss due to cost overruns from delays in plant projects.
The post of Toshiba chairman is expected to remain vacant after Shiga’s resignation.
Westinghouse Chairman Danny Roderick is also set to step down, the sources said, but Toshiba President Satoshi Tsunakawa is likely to stay on.
Shiga, Roderick and Tsunakawa took their current posts last June as Toshiba reshuffled its management following an accounting scandal that surfaced in 2015.
Shiga was the vice president in charge of the power systems business when Westinghouse acquired CB&I Stone & Webster in late 2015. CB&I Stone & Webster is the U.S. nuclear plant construction firm at the heart of Toshiba’s massive write-down problem.
Toshiba to sell part of chip business, puts overseas nuclear ops under review
Toshiba Corp (6502.T) said it will sell a minority stake in its memory chip business as it urgently seeks funds to offset an imminent multi-billion dollar writedown, adding that its overseas nuclear division – the cause of its woes – was now under review.
The drastic measures are set to be just some of the tough choices the Japanese conglomerate will have to take as proceeds from the sale are likely to only cover part of a charge that domestic media has put at $6 billion.
Still battered by a 2015 accounting scandal, Toshiba was plunged back into crisis when it emerged late last year that it had to account for huge cost overruns at a U.S. power plant construction business recently acquired by its Westinghouse division.
Describing the nuclear division as no longer a central business focus for the firm, Chief Executive Satoshi Tsunakawa said Toshiba will review Westinghouse’s role in new projects and whether it will embark on new power plant construction. The division will also now fall under direct CEO supervision.
Tsunakawa added Toshiba was looking to sell less than 20 percent of its memory chip business – the world’s biggest NAND flash memory producer after Samsung Electronics (005930.KS) – which comprises the bulk of the conglomerate’s operating profit.
The firm is rushing to complete the sale by the end of the financial year in March as failure to do so will likely mean that shareholder equity – just $3 billion in the wake of the accounting scandal – would be wiped out by the charge.
Sources have said Toshiba aims to raise more than 200 billion yen ($1.7 billion) from the sale and potential investors include private equity firms, business partner Western Digital Corp (WDC.O) and the government-backed Development Bank of Japan.
It is also selling other assets although it ruled out the sales of any of its infrastructure businesses – which include water treatment, railway and elevator firms.
“We’ve been raising funds through sales of stock holdings, real estate and other assets,” Tsunakawa told a news conference without disclosing the amount, adding that various measures were being considered to boost the firm’s capital base by March.
Toshiba also said it may eventually list the memory chip business.