Embattled Toshiba aims to boost capital with ¥600 billion share issue

Toshiba gets share relief

Toshiba's fresh funds provide for hard reboot

Toshiba's stock plummeted Monday, after the company announced plans to raise $5 billion to avoid being booted off the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

The issue of 2.28-billion new shares at ¥262.80 per share, a 10% discount to Friday's close, will result in a massive 54% dilution in earnings per share.

Toshiba struck a deal for the memory unit with a group of companies from Japan, the USA and South Korea at the end of September, but the reviews by competition watchdogs in a number of countries may not progress quickly enough to complete the sale until after March 31. Toshiba's shares, however, ended down just 5 percent at 275 yen as the risk of a delisting has largely been removed and as the capital raising had been expected.

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Toshiba's finances are in a precarious state owing to a multi-billion dollar writedown on its now bankrupt US nuclear unit, Westinghouse.

Delays in deciding on the buyer for the chip unit have meant that Toshiba may not obtain the necessary anti-trust clearance by the end of March.

In order to survive and avoid delisting, the cash-strapped group has decided on a multibillion-dollar sale of its prized chip business to a consortium led by Bain Capital. "So the negotiation power changes in favor of Toshiba now", said Claudio Aritomi, an analyst at CLSA.

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Payments for the new investment are due to be completed on December 5. The sale has been complicated by legal action from Western Digital Corp, which has argued it should have veto rights because of its partnership with Toshiba.

If the transactions are successful, Toshiba expects the consolidated negative 750 billion yen on its balance sheet will be erased by the end of the fiscal year in March. The deal would raise Effissimo's stake from nearly 10% to just over 11%, maintaining it as the top shareholder. It's also buying the largest block of stock, 320 million shares, in the new share sale.

Selling its holding in the nuclear-power business Westinghouse, and any liability for claims, will let Toshiba "significantly reduce" resources required to rehabilitate that unit, funds that can be focused on new businesses, the company said in the statement Sunday.

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The company said it would use proceeds from the share sale to pay off liabilities related to the bankrupt unit and book losses that will allow tax write-offs sufficient to boost its assets back above liabilities. If Toshiba settles obligations to Westinghouse creditors, it will then be able to request reimbursement from the US-based reactor-maker.

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