TOKYO (Reuters) – Toshiba Corp (6502.T), desperate for cash to avoid a possible delisting, has started to look into specific plans to raise about 600 billion yen ($5.3 billion) by offering new shares, possibly by year-end, public broadcaster NHK reported on Friday.
Citing unnamed sources, NHK said Toshiba was discussing the plan, centered on a third-party allotment of new shares and a public offering, with its main creditors.
Strapped with liabilities arising from its bankrupt U.S. nuclear unit, Toshiba agreed in late September to sell its prized chip unit, Toshiba Memory, to a group led by Bain Capital for $18 billion.
In a statement, Toshiba repeated its stance that it was aiming to close the deal by the end of March, saying in response to the NHK report that nothing specific had been decided.
Announcing half-year results, Chief Financial Officer Masayoshi Hirata said a day earlier that Toshiba had launched a working group to consider various options to raise capital in case the deal did not close in time.
The conglomerate, which has spent most of the past year in financial crisis, still faces risks including the likelihood that the sale of the chip unit may not close before the end of the financial year in March as regulatory reviews usually take at least six months.
If it does not get the deal done in time, it could end the year in negative net worth for a second year in a row, putting pressure on the Tokyo Stock Exchange to delist it.
Reporting by Chang-Ran Kim; Editing by Stephen Coates