Toshiba faces $986 mln loss on HD DVDs: Nikkei

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan’s Toshiba Corp is likely to book a 100 billion yen ($986 million) loss in its high-definition DVD business and post a full-year operating profit of around 250 billion yen, falling short of its outlook, the Nikkei business daily said on Thursday.

Shares of Toshiba opened down 2.3 percent at 717 yen on the report.

Toshiba’s decision to pull the plug on HD DVDs will entail production line changes and other charges that would double the 50 billion yen loss the electronics group had previously expected this business year on next-generation DVDs, the Nikkei said.

“We did not announce this, and therefore we cannot comment,” a Toshiba spokeswoman said.

The industrial electronics group has said it expects an operating profit of 290 billion yen for the year through March, but executives said the outlook for the world’s No.2 maker of NAND flash memory may be hurt by price falls in microchips and liquid crystal displays.

Since Toshiba’s announcement, Japanese retailer Edion Corp has offered to swap HD DVD players purchased at its stores with rival format Blu-ray players, with consumers footing the retail price difference.

When Toshiba announced its withdrawal from HD DVDs last month, it had HD DVD agreements with studios including NBC Universal’s Universal Pictures, Viacom Inc’s Paramount Pictures and DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc

Shares of Toshiba were trading down 1.5 percent at 723 yen as of 0039 GMT, compared with the benchmark Nikkei average’s 1 percent fall.

Reporting by Mayumi Negishi; Editing by Hugh Lawson