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Sharp, Foxconn to build ¥800B US plant; StarHub to buy cybersecurity company


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Sharp, Foxconn to build ¥800B US plant; StarHub to buy cybersecurity company

* Sharp Corp.'s President and CEO Tai Jeng-wu said that the Japanese company, together with its parent Foxconn Technology Group, or Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. Ltd., may build a display technology plant in the U.S. costing over ¥800 billion, The Nikkei reports. These panels are expected to be used in smart devices as well as in aeronautics as Boeing now uses Sharp's panels in its aircraft, according to the report.

* Singaporean telco StarHub Ltd. has agreed to acquire a 51% stake in Accel Systems & Technologies, a Singaporean cybersecurity company, The Straits Times reports. Following the S$19.4 million acquisition, StarHub will expand its Cyber Security Centre of Excellence to strengthen its cyber security solutions.

* Apple Inc. has opened its first official Southeast Asian store in Singapore. The two-story store also includes a designated space for free hands-on educational sessions on topics such as photography and coding. The store has 237 employees.

* Canada's Brookfield Asset Management is in advanced discussions with Idea Cellular Ltd and Vodafone UK's Vodafone India over a planned acquisition of the stand-alone telecom towers business of the two companies, three people with knowledge of the matter told The Economic Times (India). The combined enterprise value of the towers is reportedly about US$1 billion, despite the sellers pushing for a US$1.3 billion valuation.


* SoftBank Group Corp. is looking to increase its holding in Nvidia Corp over time with the aim of working more closely with the U.S. chipmaker, Bloomberg News reports, citing people familiar with the matter. The Japanese conglomerate currently holds about 4.9% of the chipmaker, just under the amount that would require a regulatory disclosure in the U.S., according to the report.

* Nintendo's stock market capitalization has hit ¥4.747 trillion on the Tokyo Stock Exchange on the back of the success of its latest gaming console Nintendo Switch, The Nikkei reports. This would reportedly make the Japanese company more valuable than compatriots Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. or Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd.

* Meanwhile, Sharp said that it expects to post a net profit of ¥59 billion for the fiscal year ending in March 2018, up from a loss of about ¥25 billion for the same period in 2017. The company has laid out a roadmap for the next three years that focuses heavily on Internet of Things business and ultrahigh-definition 8K displays.

* In more Sharp news, the company will file an application with the Tokyo Stock Exchange in late June, asking it to move its listing from the second section, consisting mostly of midsize companies, to the first section, The Nikkei reports. It hopes the exchange will promote the company by next March.

South Korea

* Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.'s signature smartphones Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ set the fastest domestic sales record by selling 1 million units in 40 days, Financial News reports. Meanwhile, the Samsung Group unit is also gearing up for a boost in global sales with the Galaxy S8 scheduled to launch in Japan via Japanese telcos NTT DOCOMO Inc. and KDDI Corp. in early June. NTT DOCOMO is a unit of Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp.

* Samsung Electronics is setting up a 500-billion-South-Korean-won fund aimed at helping small suppliers, Reuters reports. The move is reportedly a response to President Moon Jae-in's call to protect small businesses. The fund will let its suppliers borrow from the fund without interest for a year and would run until May 2020.

* South Korean telecommunications company SK Broadband Co. Ltd. said it is on track to establish a customer service subsidiary in June, ET News reports. The company held a meeting with the heads of nine current service contractors to reiterate its plan to hire all service workforce as regular employees and to discuss future steps.

* South Korean internet company Naver Corp.'s subsidiary Naver Business Platform Corp. plans to launch seven new products in its Naver Cloud Platform lineup in late May, including an application program interface for IP-based geolocation services, ZDNet Korea reports. The company is also opening a cloud center for the Hong Kong region, and plans to add Germany and Japan in the second half of the year to support global companies.


* Zhejiang Dahua Technology Co Ltd, a China-based security products manufacturer, is planning to raise up to US$1 billion through a share offering in Hong Kong in the third quarter, three people with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters. The company, which has a presence in 20 countries outside of China, plans to use the funds to expand overseas and boost its research and development capability.

* China is changing its way of calculating the guidance rate for the yuan against the dollar for a second time this year in a bid to reduce volatility, Reuters reports. Asia's largest economy will reduce market "herd effects" on the yuan by introducing a counter-cyclical factor into its daily fixing, the China Foreign Exchange Trade System said in a statement.

* Ltd.'s board formed a special committee to review a nonbinding acquisition proposal that it recently received from its Chairman Charles Zhang. The special committee comprises three independent directors: Dave De Yang, Charles Chan and Xiao Chen. The special committee plans to engage independent financial and legal advisers to help the committee in the review and evaluation process.

* Weibo Corp.'s controlling stockholder SINA Corp. plans to distribute shares of the Chinese social media company to SINA stockholders in July. SINA will distribute one Weibo class A ordinary share for every 10 SINA ordinary shares held.

* LeEco's sports content platform LeSports has completed a new funding round valuing it at 24 billion Chinese yuan, Reuters reports. The amount raised in the latest round, however, was not disclosed. LeSports i nvestors will be forming a new committee to supervise the funds.

* LeEco attracted Zhongyi Ecological Park, a Yuyao, Zhejiang-province based, government-backed industrial park, to be a major investor in the series B+ financing deal, Caixin reports. However, the park will offer real estate instead of money to the cash-strapped company, which is expected to build sports entertainment resources at the park.

* Zhang Zhenhua quit his position as general manager of BaiFuBao, Baidu Inc.'s online payment and personal financing tool, Sohu reports. Zhang becomes the sixth senior executive to leave Baidu in 2017.


* Google Inc. will cooperate with the Vietnamese government in removing "toxic" and illegal information on its platform, Reuters reports. Alphabet Inc. reportedly made the assurance when its Chairman Eric Schmidt met with Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc in Hanoi on May 26. Alphabet is also considering opening a representative office in the country.

* Thai state-owned telco MCOT Public Co. Ltd. hopes to launch a pay-TV business within two to three months, Krungthep Turakij reports. The announcement came after Thailand's National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission issued a network code on the 2600 MHz band to MCOT on May 24.

* Malaysian telco Axiata Group Berhad was reported to be in discussions over potentially selling its stake in Singaporean telco M1 Ltd., The Edge Markets reports. The decision to sell or remain as a stakeholder of M1 will be announced in the third quarter of this year.

* Thai mobile operator Total Access Communication Public Co. Ltd., or Dtac, would like to launch 4G services on the 2300 MHz band as soon as it signs the deal with Thai state-enterprise TOT Public Co. Ltd., Prachachat reports. This partnership is expected to help TOT turn a profit after years of losses.

* Singapore Press Holdings has appointed Ng Yat Chung as its new CEO, Channel News Asia reports. Ng Yat Chung will be the successor of the media company's current CEO, Alan Chan, who will retire on Sept. 1.

* The Association of Thai Travel Agents, or ATTA, urged the Ministry of Tourism to strike a deal with Tencent Holdings Ltd.'s WeChat, a Chinese social media app with over 700 million users, Krungthep Turakij reports. ATTA wants access to WeChat's user database to directly send important information to inbound Chinese tourists.


* News Corp Australia Pty Ltd.'s Fox Sports and Telstra Corp. Ltd. have secured a multimillion-dollar deal to centralize the production of live sports TV coverage throughout 29 stadiums in Melbourne and Sydney, The Australian Financial Review reports. Trials for Telstra's Distributed Production Network are set to begin later in 2017 and is expected to be fully operational in time for the 2018 National Rugby League and AFL seasons.

* Fairfax Media Ltd. Chief Executive Greg Hywood, along with his top management team, is set to make presentations to bidders hoping to acquire the company this week, The Australian reports. Details of the financial performance of the company's divisions will be discussed in the presentations.


* Reliance Communications Ltd. posted a loss of 12.85 billion Indian rupees for the fiscal year ended March 31 compared to a net profit of 6.6 billion rupees in the previous year, when compared on a like-for-like basis, The Economic Times (India) reports. The company attributed Reliance Jio pricing for its first full-year loss.

* Sony Corp.'s Sony Pictures Networks India is teaming up with Anthem Sports & Entertainment Corp.'s Impact Wrestling to produce the U.S.-based wrestling show in India, TelevisionPost reports. Four episodes will be produced in two days and aired to an international audience.

* State-owned BSNL plans to extend its satellite phone services for all Indian citizens in two years, Press Trust of India reports. BSNL has already submitted an application to the International Maritime Organization to complete the process within 18 to 24 months, according to its chairman and managing director Anupam Shrivastava.

* Pakistan Telecommunication Company Ltd and Telenor Pakistan (Pvt) Ltd. have signed a fiber backhaul and infrastructure sharing agreement for the second consecutive year, Propakistani reports. The partnership will see PTCL deliver more than 9,502 kilometers of fiber footprint to the Telenor ASA unit, enabling enhanced communication services in Pakistan.

* The Pakistani government is reducing withholding taxes and federal excise duty on mobile phone subscribers and telecom services, according to the proposed budget for the year 2017 to 2018, Propakistani reports.

The Daily Dose will not appear tomorrow due to the Dragon Boat Festival public holiday in Hong Kong. The next Dose will be sent out May 31. Please visit our website for the latest news updates, or check us out at


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Nozomi Ibayashi, Myungran Ha, Frances Wang, Kevin Osmond and Wil Hathaway contributed to this report. The Daily Dose has an editorial deadline of 7 a.m. Hong Kong time. Some external links may require a subscription.