Japan Industrial Partners (JIP) – the same investor group that bought the Olympus Imaging business and Sony’s Vaio brand – has purchased 78.65% of the shares in Toshiba.

The Toshiba logo. (Source: AP file.)

Toshiba, which was established in 1875 as a maker of telegraph equipment, is one of Japan’s oldest and biggest firms and a leading brand behind rice cookers, TVs, laptops and computer storage devices. It has been troubled in recent years by inadequate corporate governance which led to a major fine for overstating its profits by more than a $1bn over six years and then taking a 700 billion yen write-down through huge losses at its US nuclear power business, Westinghouse, which filed for bankruptcy in 2017. To avoid bankruptcy, Toshiba sold its memory chip business in 2018 and, since then, has considered splitting the rest of the company. However, JIP’s offer to take the company private was seen as a way to avoid “having to be accountable” to shareholders.

According to Japan Today: The switch to Toshiba’s new parent company and largest shareholder, called TBJH Inc. will take place on Sept 27. The move still needs shareholders’ approval, and a meeting has been set for November, according to Toshiba. Toshiba will then delist from the Tokyo Stock Exchange within about a month. That will end its more than seven-decade history as a listed company.