Toshiba earnings forecast revised up

Toshiba opts for tech outsider as former banker becomes CEO

Satoshi Tsunakawa, who was the CEO of the company, is stepping down to become the chief operating officer of the company. Kurumatani takes over on April 1st.

Toshiba told shareholders that the new appointment would help to underpin its efforts to overhaul its business and financial postures.

Kurumatani, who is now president of CVC Asia Pacific Japan, a unit of British private equity firm CVC Capital Partners, will take up the Toshiba posts on April 1, the Japanese electronics and machinery maker said.

Kurumatani, as the company's next chairman and CEO, will be responsible for establishing strategies for growth in the medium to long-term.

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The move comes amid a tumultuous period for the company. The company now expects its shareholders' equity to recover to ¥460 billion as of March 31, thanks to proceeds from its issuance of new shares under a third-party allotment scheme and its reduced tax burden related to its US nuclear business. They are now focusing on selling crown jewel memory units.

Toshiba and its chip business partner, Western Digital, agreed in December previous year to settle a long-running dispute that emerged over the Japanese firm's plans to sell its chip unit, the companies said in a statement, removing a key obstacle to the deal. Toshiba has been plagued by losses in recent times, but it has now forecast full-year net income of 520 billion yen instead of its previous outlook for a 110 billion yen loss.

Officials of the firm say the upgrade is largely due to its sale of claims against Westinghouse, a former Toshiba American subsidiary.

The sale, which will see Toshiba retake 40 per cent of the unit, is aimed at putting the conglomerate back on a firmer footing after a year of crisis stemming from huge losses at its USA nuclear unit, and Kurumatani declared his first priority was bolstering the conglomerate's finances.

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