Dec 17 Sharp Corp (6753.T) will spend about 100
billion yen to build production lines for small and midsize
LCDs, with Apple Inc (AAPL.O) slated to purchase bulk of the
output for its iPhone, the Nikkei business daily said.
Apple will shoulder a large portion of the 100 billion yen
investment and buy most of the panels produced by Sharp, which
has supplied LCD panels for Apple's iPod touch music player,
the paper reported.
Sharp will start installing equipment next year at a Mie
Prefecture plant and mass production is slated to begin in the
latter half of 2012, it said.
Smartphone demand is expanding worldwide, encouraging major
investments by Japanese electronics makers such as Toshiba Corp
(6502.T), which also plans to build an Ishikawa Prefecture
factory to boost LCD supplies to Apple, the paper said.
Apple will expand procurement from the two Japanese firms
to further expand its market share in smartphones, the Nikkei
(Reporting by Soham Chatterjee in Bangalore)