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June 24, 2017

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Intervention key to getting Sharp back on top: Gou

Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. Chairman Terry Gou yesterday vowed that the company will intervene in the operations of Sharp in the future, which he said is key to revitalizing the Japanese tech giant.

Gou said that Hon Hai is not a venture capital firm. If more money is enough for Sharp to turn a profit then the firm could go directly to banks, he added.

According to a Japanese news report, Sharp faces a cash shortage, a large deficit and discordance with Hon Hai.

Gou rejected the claims of discrepant opinions between Hon Hai and Sharp. He said that he and Sharp President Takashi Okuda have met each other and exchanged letters, signifying mutual trust.

He said Hon Hai can help Sharp improve its efficiency and reduce its deficit, resolving the cash shortage.

Intervening in the operations of Sharp will ensure the future success of the company, Gou said. Apple Inc. sends its people to its subcontractors' factories in order to facilitate the stable supply of goods, which is also a form of intervention, he said.

Gou said he hoped Sharp can understand that he does not have time to stay in Japan, and demanded that the power of Sharp's management team be handed over to a younger generation.

Gou said he was informed by Okuda on Aug. 3 that Hon Hai does not need to purchase Sharp' stocks at 550 yen per share. Okuda added that it is not Gou's responsibility to buy these shares, according to the Hon Hai chief.

Hon Hai, the world's largest contract electronics maker, agreed in March to buy a 9.9-percent stake in the struggling Japanese company for about US$800 million, or 550 Japanese yen (US$7.01) per share.

Gou reiterated that there had never been a plan for a press conference for Hon Hai and Sharp to sign any contract at the 10th-generation panel factory in Osaka, adding that former Vice President Vincent Siew should have been the focus of the day instead of him.

Hon Hai's market capitalization surged yesterday by over NT$50 billion as the company reported better-than-expected second quarter results.

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