Sharp Vows to Achieve Profitability

The Yomiuri Shimbun
People enter the venue of the annual shareholders meeting for Sharp Corp. in Sakai, Osaka Prefecture, on Thursday.

SAKAI (Jiji Press) — Sharp Corp. will work hard to achieve profitability after two consecutive years of net loss, Executive Vice President Masahiro Okitsu told shareholders on Thursday.

Okitsu became president and CEO of the Japanese electronics maker later on Thursday, replacing Wu Po-Hsuan, who stepped aside to become deputy chairman.

The company will “engage in selection and concentration, and invest in unique products,” Okitsu said at a shareholder meeting in Sakai, Osaka Prefecture. The comments came after Sharp last month released a plan to focus on its brand businesses including household appliances.

Wu apologized for the company’s dismal earnings.

In response to criticism from shareholders that Sharp’s turnaround plan is unclear, Okitsu said the company will do all it can to meet shareholder expectations.

Sharp logged a consolidated net loss of ¥149.9 billion  for the year that ended in March, due chiefly to its sluggish liquid crystal display panel operations, the second straight year of loss. The company took restructuring steps, including stopping production at its Sakai plant, which produces large LCD panels for television sets.

Thursday marked the peak of Japan’s general shareholder meeting season. Roughly 670 firms, or about 30% of publicly traded firms with a fiscal period through March, held shareholder meetings.