Japan's Toshiba sues US Western Digital over memory unit sale
Toshiba Corp. said on Wednesday it is suing its joint venture partner Western Digital over the US company's opposition to a plan to sell the Japanese electronics and energy giant's memory chip unit.
Toshiba said in a statement that it was seeking a permanent injunction and 120 billion yen ($1.1 billion) in damages for what it called interference in the effort to sell Toshiba Memory Corp. Financially strapped Toshiba needs the cash from selling its flash memory unit to survive, but Western Digital contends its Japanese partner has no right to sell the memory chip unit without its consent.
Such sales can be sensitive because they involve the transfer of valuable technology.
Western Digital owns some SanDisk chip operations including the joint venture in Japan with Toshiba. It has submitted its own bid for the memory chip business, but last week Toshiba announced it had chosen a consortium led by a Japanese government-backed fund and Bain Capital Private Equity LP as the preferred bidder.