Apple supplier Japan Display aims to seal $468 million bailout deal by end-October – CEO

Technology

FILE PHOTO: Japan Display Inc’s logo is pictured at its headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, August 9, 2016. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon /File Photo

TOKYO (Reuters) – Apple Inc (AAPL.O) supplier Japan Display Inc (6740.T) aims to seal a revised bailout deal by the end of this month for at least 50 billion yen ($468 million) in vital funding, its new chief executive said on Monday.

Minoru Kikuoka also told Reuters in an interview that liquid crystal display (LCD) screens are drawing renewed market interest, pointing to solid demand for affordable smartphones with low-cost screens.

“We are close to (raising) 50 billion and I believe we can cement the deal this month,” Kikuoka, who took the helm of the cash-strapped display maker in September, said.

The deal, if realized, would ease immediate risks of a cash shortfall after Chinese investment firm Harvest Group last month withdrew from the consortium of investors behind the bailout.

Japan Display has said Hong Kong-based Oasis Management still plans to contribute $150-180 million, while a major Japan Display client, which sources said is Apple, intends to invest $200 million.

Orders for LCD screens from a major customer have been “stronger than previously planned,” Kikuoka also said. The comment follows a recent Nikkei Asian Review report that Apple has asked suppliers to increase production of its iPhone 11 models by around 10%.

Reporting by Makiko Yamazaki and Noriyuki Hirata; Editing by David Dolan

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