Toshiba Raises Net Income Forecast on Energy, Asset Sales

  • Energy unit to return to profit after Westinghouse writedowns
  • Personal computer business targeting breakeven result

Toshiba Corp. more than doubled its full-year earnings forecast on asset sales and a projected recovery in its power and computer memory divisions.

Net income will total 100 billion yen ($918 million) in the 12 months ending March, Toshiba said in a release on Thursday. That compares with a 40 billion yen forecast in March.

Toshiba is trimming its empire as it tries to recover from a multi-year accounting scandal over padded profits. The conglomerate agreed to sell its medical unit to Canon Inc. and home-appliance division to China’s Midea Group Co. Incoming President Satoshi Tsunakawa is facing the task of winning back investor confidence after record losses, executive resignations and a plunge in its share price.

Shares of Toshiba rose. 0.9 percent to 222.9 yen in Tokyo, paring the decline in the past 12 months to 44 percent.

Toshiba kept its outlook for 120 billion yen in operating profit this fiscal year, rebounding from a loss of 719.1 billion yen, with revenue forecast to reach 5.1 trillion yen. The company reported a net loss of 483 billion yen for the year ended March on sales of 5.67 trillion yen.

Tsunakawa, currently a senior vice president, will replace Masashi Muromachi as president if shareholders approve the move at a meeting scheduled for late June. Muromachi took over as president temporarily in July after three of his predecessors stepped down amid the accounting scandal. He is staying on as a special adviser.

The energy systems solution business, which includes Westinghouse, is expected to return to profit after writedowns last fiscal year. Operating income will be 51 billion yen the 12 months ending March, compared with a 361.2 billion yen loss a year earlier.

Storage and device solutions, which includes computer memory, is expected to have operating earnings of 32 billion yen, it said.

The company is investing 360 billion yen over a period of three years till March 2019 on a new factory which will make its proprietary 3D flash memory chips. Toshiba expects output to begin no earlier than 2018. It maintains a flash memory partnership with SanDisk Corp. and is in talks with the U.S.-based company about investments in 3D flash, Toshiba said in March.

The PC unit will break even this year after a loss of 87.1 billion yen. Toshiba has also been in discussions with Fujitsu Ltd. and Vaio Corp., the personal computer maker spun off from Sony Corp., on a possible merger of their PC operations. While Toshiba is still considering options, the business is in a position to make a profit independently after scaling back production and targeting enterprise clients, Tsunakawa said earlier this month.

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