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Toshiba to halve TV staff, plans 4K focus

Toshiba said it will halve its TV staff from 6,000 to 3,000 and shut down two of its three TV manufacturing facilities this fiscal year, as it looks to cut costs and focus on Ultra HD. 

In an announcement submitted to the Tokyo Stock Exchange, Toshiba said it was looking to implement the structural reform at its visual products business, which includes LCD TVs, as a way of improving profitability.

Toshiba said it will allocate resources to “large screen Ultra HD (4K) LCD TVs, where growing demand is expected” and will also concentrate resources on “strengthening cloud services, which are expected to enhance linkage between digital products and between digital products and home appliances.”

By sliming down its number of overseas TV manufacturing facilities to just one, the firm said that it aimed to increase products from original design manufacturers (ODMs) but will reduce the number of ODMs it works with and the number of TV models it produces.

It said that the integration of these facilities, as well as the reallocation of resources to Japan, would lead to the reduced headcount.

“Toshiba will focus on emerging markets including Asia, the Middle East and Africa, where growth in demand is expected. In addition, Toshiba will end sales in unprofitable regions,” the company said.

At the same time Toshiba announced plans to separate the visual products business from its in-house digital products and services company and merge it with Toshiba Home Appliances – a subsidiary that oversees the home appliance business.

The new Toshiba Consumer Electronics Corporation (provisional title) will operate both businesses and is due to be established in the next six months.