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Summary:

A tie-up between Japanese electronics powerhouses Panasonic and Sanyo has been in the works for a while, but today it was made official, with Panasonic saying it has agreed to buy Sanyo for ¥800 billion ($9 billion) via a public tender offer. The main focus of […]

A tie-up between Japanese electronics powerhouses Panasonic and Sanyo has been in the works for a while, but today it was made official, with Panasonic saying it has agreed to buy Sanyo for ¥800 billion ($9 billion) via a public tender offer. The main focus of the deal, Panasonic said, is the combination of the solar and lithium-ion battery businesses of the two companies, as well as a strengthened financial and business position.

The companies confirmed that they were discussing a possible deal last month. Panasonic said today that the tender offer will start as soon as possible. The deal could close by February, with Sanyo becoming a part of the Panasonic group.

Sanyo brings with it a big solar panel business, and Panasonic is looking at boosting both its solar and battery divisions once the deal is closed, saying that it sees significant future growth in both markets. Panasonic said the solar business will expand in the area of highly efficient crystalline silicon solar photovoltaic cells and modules, and in the development next-generation solar cells.

Earlier this year, Sanyo announced plans to build a new $80-million, 70-megawatt solar manufacturing facility in Oregon. The plant is expected to open in October 2009, with production getting up to full capacity by April 2010.

Panasonic said it plans to make “active investments” in batteries for hybrid and electric vehicles, with the company saying that collaboration with automakers could be strengthened by the Panasonic-Sanyo deal. Earlier this week, Japan’s Honda Motor inked an agreement with Japanese battery maker GS Yuasa to form a ¥15 billion joint venture for the development of lithium-ion batteries for hybrid vehicles.

Panasonic may also need to watch its back in the U.S., as battery makers there formed a coalition yesterday to battle overseas competitors in the growing market for hybrid and electric car batteries. More than a dozen U.S. technology companies are teaming up to build a battery manufacturing plant there, and are reportedly asking the federal government for $1 billion to support the plan.

  1. We need to push forward technology on battery designs. This is the main stumbling block on producing a viable long-distant electric car.

    I do believe electric cars are on of our best choice for alternative transportation. We already have the distribution grid to recharge them. Imagine 30% of the vehicles being electric in the USA.. and how much we could drop our dependency on foreign oil..

    In the end, I think we need to focus on only a few technologies that would be the most viable and easiest in integrate for the near to mid term future.

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  2. [...] and Panasonic have been in talks for a while now, but recently they’ve come to a decision regarding their potential [...]

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  3. [...] Toshiba, which has been increasing its efforts for cutting edge lithium ion battery technology. Sanyo and Panasonic are joining up to become a lithium-ion battery powerhouse, as [...]

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  4. [...] Toshiba, which has been increasing its efforts for cutting edge lithium ion battery technology. Sanyo and Panasonic are joining up to become a lithium-ion battery powerhouse, as [...]

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  5. [...] Josie Garthwaite No Comments Posted January 23rd, 2009 at 1:30 pm in Energy Teaming up with fellow electronics powerhouse Panasonic wasn’t enough for Sanyo Electric. And for Nippon Oil Corp.(s NPOIY), a toe-dip into [...]

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  6. [...] has shown it’s serious about trying to grab a foothold in the green energy market. In late 2008 the consumer electronics giant announced plans to buy a majority stake in Sanyo. The deal closed [...]

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