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Panasonic Said to Get Health Care Bids From Toshiba, TPG

May 28 (Bloomberg) -- TPG Capital, Toshiba Corp. are among bidders for Panasonic Corp.’s health care unit, said people with knowledge of the matter.

A deal may be valued at more than 100 billion yen ($978 million), one of the people said, asking not to be identified as the information is private. The company drew offers from fewer than 10 buyout funds in the first round of an auction, which closed yesterday, the person said.

The maker of Viera televisions is considering a sale of its health care and logistics units as it focuses on turning around its consumer electronics business. Osaka-based Panasonic plans to spend 250 billion yen on restructuring during the next two years to end losses from sales of TVs, semiconductors, mobile phones, circuit boards and optical devices.

Panasonic spokeswoman Megumi Kitagawa declined to comment on the bidders. Spokesmen for Toshiba and TPG also declined to comment. Reuters on May 24 reported that Toshiba and TPG were among potential bidders for the unit, without naming its sources.

Proceeds from a sale of the unit, which sells pharmaceuticals, runs blood banks and provides hospice care, will help Panasonic meet its target to generate 200 billion yen in cash-flow. The next round of bids for the business are likely to be made in July, one person said.

To contact the reporters on this story: Grace Huang in Tokyo at xhuang66@bloomberg.net; Shigeru Sato in Tokyo at ssato10@bloomberg.net; Takashi Amano in Tokyo at tamano6@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Tighe at mtighe4@bloomberg.net

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