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Panasonic to sell 80% stake in surveillance camera unit to Polaris Capital

Panasonic Corp. on May 31 said it agreed to sell an 80% stake in its surveillance camera business to Japanese private equity firm Polaris Capital Group Co. Ltd.

The security systems business will be transferred to a new company, called Panasonic i-Pro Sensing Solutions, on October 1. Polaris will take an 80% stake in the company, with Panasonic holding the remainder.

The Japanese electronics company said the deal would enable the new company to benefit from Polaris' experience in manufacturing and other large-scale enterprises. Focusing on the North American market, the new company will pursue mergers, acquisitions and alliances, and may seek an IPO in the future, Panasonic said.

Polaris will invest through its ¥75 billion Polaris Private Equity Fund IV vehicle.

In January, Toyota Motor Corp. formed a joint venture with Panasonic in the electric-vehicle batteries segment. Both companies will transfer equipment and personnel related to battery cells to a new entity to be formed by 2020-end, with Toyota holding 51% and Panasonic holding 49% of the company.

On May 9, Panasonic said it expects net profit to drop 29.6% to ¥200 billion in fiscal 2020.

As of May 30, US$1 was equivalent to ¥109.73.