China’s Hisense has acquired Toshiba’s TV division for $113 million dollars. The Japanese company has been struggling to stay afloat whereas Hisense is looking for a route into the global TV market.
Toshiba-branded Hisense TVs
Hisense has acquired a 95% stake in Toshiba Visual Solutions, which includes TV production, the brand, research and development, an IP portfolio, and operation, for $113 million dollars. The division employs 700 people.
Under the deal, Hisense will obtain the rights to the Toshiba TV brand “for a period of 40 years for visual solution partners operating in Europe, South East Asia and other markets”, the company confirmed.
- “As the Official Television Sponsor of the FIFA World Cup Russia 2018, Hisense is poised to continue to expand and implement its global brand vision and strategy. With the benefit of this acquisition, Hisense will develop and enlarge its international strategy of TV business in R&D, branding and marketing by operating under multiple brands. The cooperation between Hisense and Toshiba will drive changes to the new picture of TV business,” said Hisense.
Toshiba has a rich 142-year history but the company has been struggling to stay afloat as of lately. It is no longer a key player in the TV market, except in Japan, and is also considering selling off other assets.
In its announcement of the acquisition, Hisense included this map.
Hisense is the largest TV manufacturer in China and has been for 13 consecutive years. The company also holds the rights to sell Sharp-branded TVs in the US but Foxconn, who has acquired Sharp, is unlikely to extend the licensing agreement after it expires approximately 2 years from now. Toshiba has currently licensed its TV brand to Compal in the US and Vestel in Europe. It is not clear how the deal will affect the existing licensing agreements in the US and Europe.
Hisense has for a long time been trying to break through in the global market, and the company clearly believes that more established TV brands will help it achieve that goal. The deal is expected to close in February 2018.