Tokyo - At least temporarily, Sony will not move forward with plans to expand its stake in a joint LCD panel production plant with Sharp, according to reports from Japan Monday.
Sony had been expected to raise its interest in Sharp Display Products from 7 percent to as high as 34 percent by the end of April, according to Nikkei reports, but with supply outpacing television demand due to competitive efforts from South Korean and Taiwanese manufacturers, Sony is holding off on making further investments.
The Nikkei Business Daily said the decision was influenced by the strong value of the Japanese yen against the dollar, which is giving panel makers outside of Japan an advantage in delivering products at lower prices than Japanese producers can comfortably match.
According to Nikkei, Sony will continue to study the situation over the course of the year before deciding whether or not to increase its stake.
Sony invested 10 billion yen in Sharp Display Products in December 2009, with plans to slow raise its stake over time, Nikke said.