Toshiba prepares to sell part of chip business

Japan's Toshiba Corp has started the process of selling part of its chip business, Reuters today reported, citing three people familiar with the matter.

The sale would include businesses that handle system LSI and discrete chips, which are used in cars, home appliances and industrial machinery, but not Toshiba's NAND flash memory operations, the report said.

The loss-making operations posted sales of 330 billion  ($2.78 billion) in the year ended March 2015.

The electronics conglomerate has started accepting bids and Development Bank of Japan has already shown an interest, the report added.

State-owned Development Bank of Japan already holds a stake in Seiko Holdings Corp's semiconductor operations.

Toshiba, whose businesses presence spans a wide range of sectors from home electronics to nuclear power stations, is recently recovering from a $1.2-billion accounting scandal that caused the company to restate earnings for more than six years.

Top executives set unrealistic profit targets that systematically led to flawed accounting. An investigation found that accounting irregularities were ''skillfully'' hidden from outside observers.

Last year the Tokyo-based company sold its image sensor business to Sony Corp and its 4.6-per cent stake in Finnish elevator maker Kone Oyj for $946 million as part of the Japanese company's restructuring plan.