Panasonic, the consumer electronics company, is understood to be in serious discussions to acquire Sanyo Electric. If the deal goes ahead it would see the combined company would leapfrog Hitachi to become Japan’s largest electronics group.
It is reported that the two companies have already reached a preliminary agreement, but Panasonic has denied that a decision to acquire Sanyo has been finalised.
A Panasonic statement says: “This announcement was not made by Panasonic, and the company has not decided anything in regards to the purchase.”
It is understood that Panasonic would look to make Sanyo a subsidiary and it is in negotiations with Sanyo’s main shareholders – Goldman Sachs, Sumitomo Mitsui Bank and Daiwa Securities – to buy a controlling stake in the company.
If the deal goes ahead, the two companies would create a group with over •11,000bn (£69bn) in revenue.
Panasonic is the world’s largest producer of plasma televisions, while Sanyo is a strong player in the high-growth lithium-ion batteries category.