Tag: Toshiba

Toshiba to write off $802 million

ToshibaAccounting mishaps that saw several top executives at Toshiba lose their jobs recently will lead the company to write off $802 million, it’s been reported.

According to Nikkei, the write off suggested by independent investors show there’s weakness in Toshiba’s semiconductor, appliances, and its Westinghouse nuclear wing.

The financial results are not finalised but a source told Nikkei that profits for the year up to March 2015 could be halved.

Toshiba bought a stake in Westinghouse in 2006 and wants to sell its stake in the business but it will be hard to find a buyer, in the wake of the Fukushima disaster.

The accounting “irregulaties” were apparently part of the Toshiba corporate culture and were only discovered when an external auditor reviewed its books.

Toshiba gets enterprise sassy

ToshibaDespite being beset by high level accounting woes, Japanese giant Toshiba is pressing ahead with product introductions.

Its storage division said it has released the next generation of enterprise solid state drives (SSDs) for its PX series.

The PX04S has four serial attached SCSI SAS models aimed at enterprise applications such as mail servers, database servers, virtualised file servers and primary storage.

The dual ported 12Gbit/s SAS PX04S has read IOPS up to 270K and write IOPS up to 145K, supporting up to 3.84 terabytes (TB).

Toshiba has high endurance, mid endurance and value endurance configurations with obvious price differences.

Here’s a snapshot of the range.

Toshiba enterprise SSDs

Ernst Young flounders on accountant’s sea

shipwreck-1854The Japanese accountants Ernst & Young are wondering how on earth they let through such a pile of old Tosh when it came to Toshiba’s accounts.

Toshiba managed to stuff up its accounts by more than $1.2 billion more or less under the eyes of its auditors Ernst & Young.

Ernst & Young ShinNihon has established a team of about 20 executives to investigate whether there were any problems with how it conducted its audits of Toshiba.

The news was first reported by the Nikkei newspaper but it does suggest that Ernst & Young are a little concerned that it may have done something a little bit wrong.

After all while the executives would technically be justified trying to make their company look its best even when some of its divisions were losing money, it was up to accounts to stop them.

An external panel of lawyers and accountants hired to probe Toshiba’s accounts found the company had inflated profits $1.23 billion over seven years by postponing the realisation of losses and other schemes.

Ernst & Young ShinNihon’s finest minds are also the subject of the Japan Institute of Certified Public Accountants, a self-regulatory body for the accounting industry.

The Financial Services Agency, the country’s financial regulator, is expected to follow with its own probe in the coming months so Ernst & Young ShinNihon will have to come up with some pretty good answers.

The in-house investigating team at Ernst & Young ShinNihon is made of audit check specialists, and there will be no cross-over with the roughly 150 people working to finish the post-scandal audit of Toshiba’s accounts, the person familiar with the matter said.

The auditing firm will aim to finish its investigation by the end of August.

Toshiba makes Muromachi a permie

toshiba-11q4-C655D-S5330-cover-lgTroubled electronics maker Toshiba has decided that its interim President Masashi Muromachi is the bloke to steer it through its current financial crisis.

Muromachi took over after CEO Hisao Tanaka resigned after an independent probe found that he had been aware the company had inflated its profits by $1.2 billion over several years.

Executives have also been resigning over their roles in the country’s biggest accounting scandal in years.

While better known for its IT products, in Japan the outfit was infamous for supplying reactors to the Fukushima nuclear power station.

The company’s appointments committee, which includes external directors decided on the new appointment. Toshiba will propose the plan at an extraordinary shareholders’ meeting in September.

Seen as a “safe pair of hands”, Muromachi was not implicated in the accounting irregularities that saw the departure of eight executives last week.

The third-party committee’s report said Tanaka and vice chairman Norio Sasaki pressured business divisions to meet difficult targets. They knew they were overstating profits and delaying reporting losses.

Much of the problem appears to be the Japanese culture of never questioning authority.  Although many Japanese shareholders would wish that if Toshiba was going to follow any tradition, it should be one were dishonoured CEOs should gut themselves in the car park.

Toshiba bosses fall on their swords

ToshibaThe president of Toshiba and the company’s vice chairman have resigned following “inappropriate accounting”.

Hisao Tanaka and Norio Sasaki have resigned and that follows the resignation of six other senior staff at the company.

An independent report had concluded that senior management at Toshiba inflated profits over a series of years, and Tanaka said that the company will now go through a thorough period of reform.

Toshiba will be forced to release statements about its profits between April 2008 and March 2014.

The executives who have resigned could now face extradition from Japan to the USA if the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) decides they should face criminal charges.

Toshiba released details of “irregularities” in their accounts in April this year after regulators found everything didn’t add up as it should have done.

Toshiba CEO steps down

cashToshiba Chief Executive Hisao Tanaka and a number of key executives will step down in September to take responsibility for accounting irregularities.

The Japanese conglomerate has hired a third-party committee to investigate past book-keeping practices, and sources have said the probe was focusing on the role top officials played in the irregularities.

Apparently he will not be led to the Toshiba carpark, be required by custom to compose a Haiku on the transcendence of life, or hack into his bowels with a piece of sharp cutlery.

The Japanese conglomerate has hired a third-party committee to investigate past book-keeping practices, and sources have said the probe was focusing on the role top officials played in the irregularities.

Apparently the exit of Tanaka along Vice Chairman Norio Sasaki is supposed to be a sacrifice to shareholders who are probably going to demand blood when the committee reports back.

Over half of the board was likely to be replaced at the company’s next shareholders’ meeting in September.

A Toshiba spokeswoman said the company had not yet made any decision on the matter and was waiting for the third-party committee to release its findings, but it is fairly clear that word has got out about what will happen next.

The Nikkei Business Daily earlier reported that Toshiba was expected to announce Tanaka’s resignation when the report was released next week.

Tosh announced accounting irregularities in early April, two months after financial regulators ordered a report on past bookkeeping. It has been unable to close its books for the past financial year in the meantime and suspended its year-end dividend.

Sources said previously that investigators’ central theory is that executives, worried about the impact of the 2011 Fukushima disaster on its nuclear unit, set overly aggressive targets in new businesses such as smart meters and electronic toll booths, encouraging the understating of costs and overestimating of revenue.

Chip making and PC figures a load of old Tosh

toshiba-11q4-C655D-S5330-cover-lgThe inquiry into creative accounting at Toshiba has found that the outfit’s semiconductor and PC businesses were also affected by the scandal.

In May, Toshiba set up a third-party committee to expand a probe into other businesses after an internal investigation found “accounting problems” related to infrastructure and construction work.

Although the figures took a bit of a tumble when they were recalculated by someone who was good with numbers few people batted so much as an eyelid.

The Nikkei Business Daily has been asking people in the know and found out that the same creative book-cooking antics had been found in Tosh’s PC and chip making operations.

Finding the same thing in the rest of the business will not only force the Japanese industrial conglomerate to revise down profit further, it shows that the problem is much worse than expected.

So far the “inappropriate book-keeping” had led to profits being overstated by $438 million in recent years.

A Toshiba spokeswoman said the Nikkei report was not based on anything that the company had announced and that the third-party investigation was ongoing.

PCs continue to fail

IBM PCFigures from IDC showed that the market for PCs in the Middle East and African (MEA) market continued to fall.

Its latest figures showed that in the first quarter of this year, sales fell by 9.6 percent compared to the same quarter last year, with only 4.3 million units shipped.

But the decline is a little more complicated than people getting bored of PCs. IDC thinks the “poor performance” is because of currency changes in some regions and also the instability caued by global oil prices.

Laptops fell by 9.4 percent to 2.7 million units. Desktop shipments fell by 10 percent, to 1.6 million units.

Fouad Charakla, research manager for PCs said that important markets like Nigeria, Turkey, Egypt and Algeria all faltered mainly because of currency fluctuations. Turkey, however, was hit “inventory pile ups” from the previous quarter.

HP is number one in the market, followed by Lenovo and Dell. But Toshiba – which is in fourth place – fell by a precipitous 34.3 percent.

IDC thinks that the MEA PC market will continue to fall in 2015 by an estimated 4.8 percent, year on year.

And IDC is predicting that the market between 2019 will stay flat. Commercial outfits will stay loyal to the X86 standard, but ordinary people will buy tablets and smartphones.

Toshiba gets a Cortina button

1024px-Ford_Cortina_KTO959EToshiba is introducing a Cortina button into their keyboards as a convenient way to call up the Windows 10 virtual assistant.

Cortina is an intelligent personal assistant which is Microsoft’s answer to SIRI.  By all accounts the software is rather good and the idea of having a button to call it up could make it really useful.

Jeff Barney, the general manager and vice president in charge of Toshiba America’s PC business said that the Cortina key will be on all of Toshiba’s Windows 10 PCs—“across the board, top to bottom,” he said.

The key will be located on the upper left area of the keyboard, near the function keys, he said.

Toshiba hopes that the move will separate itself from other hardware releases made on the back of Windows 10.  It is a good idea though and other suppliers are certain to follow.


Microsoft pushes internet of things

windows-10-start-menu-customised-live-tilesIn common with every man and his dog, Microsoft has made a statement of intent that it wants to be big in the much hyped internet of things (IoT).

At the Computex show in Taipei today, Microsoft said it will cooperate with Toshiba to build Windows and Azure IoT gadgets.

It also said, according to the Digitimes wire, that it will concentrate on providing IoT devices for the transportation industry in a bid to help track goods more easily.

And it showed off a home system called Crestron Pyng that is supposed to link lighting, audio, heating, locks and other services using Azure IoT services.

The announcements came as it gave more details of hardware support for Windows 10, which is set to debut at the end of July.

Toshiba, HP, Dell, Asustek and Acer will all have PCs running Windows 10 at launch.

Microsoft has pledged to have Windows 10 running on a billion devices of all kinds over the next few years.

It is offering a free upgrade to people who have Windows 7 or who are unlucky enough to have devices running Windows 8 or Windows 8.1/.