Toshiba has received a $15bn buyout proposal from a consortium led by a Japanese private equity firm, according to people with the knowledge of the discussions.
If the buyout led by Japan Industrial Partners materialises, it would mark Japan’s biggest take-private deal and conclude an eight-year saga that nearly brought the 147-year-old industrial conglomerate to financial collapse.
In a statement on Thursday, Toshiba said it received a final acquisition proposal from JIP, which has teamed up with financial services group Orix, chipmaker Rohm and other Japanese companies.
“It has just been received today,” the company said, adding that it would “assess the proposal and will continue to act in the best interests of the shareholders and other stakeholders of the company”.
While it declined to comment on details of the proposal, people close to the deal said the ¥2tn ($15bn) buyout proposal was submitted after JIP secured commitments from banks for loans totalling ¥1.4tn.
The deal had attracted interest from other global private equity firms such as Bain Capital and CVC, but Toshiba granted the preferred bidder status in October.
Since then, negotiations with JIP dragged on for months as the fund faced difficulties in securing a financing commitment from Japanese banks, the people said.
JIP has previously acquired assets from groups such as Sony and Olympus, but the fund has no record of buying an entire company of Toshiba’s size.