Sharp offers shares to raise cash

Troubled Japanese telly maker Sharp is planning to raise as much as $1.50 billion through a public share offering.

According to Bloomberg,  the company, which some expected to be sold off, needs the cash to bolster its finances and could approve the decision as early as next week.

It is also trying to raise approximately $200 million in a third-party share allocation through a financing plan that has been shared with creditors.

The Osaka-based company supplies display panels to Apple but had to be rescued by the banks last year. It has since received investments from Samsung and Qualcomm to stay afloat.

The third-party share placement will be made to companies that have deep business ties to Sharp, including Lixil, Makita and Denso.

The company has been trying to come out with a deal with its main banks over plans to increase its equity capital and reduce its relative level of indebtedness for months.

Sharp suffers from tough price competition in the market for LCD panels and needs to raise funding to address an expected $120 million shortfall in its corporate pension plan it is projected to face by March.

On the plus side, Sharp expects to post an operating profit in the quarter ending in September, which would be its fourth quarterly profit in a row.

It had been in talks with Samsung about an expanded business tie-up but those talks broke down last month.