Toshiba says detailed talks on buyouts meaningful only after option review

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The logo of Toshiba Corp. is seen next to a traffic signal atop of a building in Tokyo, Japan June 11, 2021. REUTERS/Issei Kato

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TOKYO, Sept 8 (Reuters) - Toshiba Corp (6502.T) said on Wednesday detailed talks on potential take-private deals would make sense only after all strategic options are carefully reviewed, spurning calls from some shareholders to start soliciting buyout bids.

The statement comes as the Japanese industrial conglomerate has been in talks with financial and strategic investors, including KKR & Co Inc (KKR.N) and three other global private equity firms to seek their ideas for its new strategy.

But the latest process is not meant to formally solicit buyout bids for the overall company or some of its assets, puzzling some investors who have questioned why the company has not started an official soliciting process, sources have said.

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Toshiba's strategic review should first focus on understanding the approach of potential investors to enhancing corporate value, including their approach to resolving the multiple issues faced in pursuing a take-private option, the board said in a statement.

"The board believes that a meaningful and informed discussion on pricing would be most productive once discussions on enhancing value have been completed to its satisfaction," it said.

"As such, the board has not yet decided on the most appropriate course of action and is continuing to explore feasible strategic alternatives," it added.

Toshiba launched a full review of its current assets after it dismissed a $20 billion takeover bid from CVC Capital Partners as lacking detail. The results of the review will be presented when the company announces a new mid-term business plan in October.

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Reporting by Makiko Yamazaki; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman, Robert Birsel

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