October 30, 2018 / 9:37 AM / 20 days ago

Sharp lifts annual profit outlook, to retire some preferred shares

A logo of Sharp Corp is pictured at the CEATEC JAPAN 2017 (Combined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies) at the Makuhari Messe in Chiba, Japan, October 2, 2017. REUTERS/Toru Hanai

TOKYO (Reuters) - Sharp Corp nudged its full-year profit outlook higher on Tuesday amid a turnaround under the ownership of Taiwanese contract manufacturer Foxconn, and said it plans to retire some preferred shares.

The Osaka-based electronics maker, a supplier to Apple Inc, said it expects an operating profit of 112 billion yen ($993.88 million) in the year through next March compared with a previous 110 billion yen forecast.

The company has slashed costs after being taken over by Foxconn, formally known as Hon Hai Precision Industry Co Ltd, in 2016. Foxconn’s wide sales network has helped the company even as it struggles to compete with South Korean rivals in organic light-emitting diode (OLED) screen technology.

Sharp said it plans to buy back 92,000 preferred shares from banks for 85 billion yen ($754 million) and to cancel them.

Earlier this year, Sharp unveiled a plan to issue up to $2 billion in new shares to buy back preferred shares that it issued to banks in return for a bailout in 2015. It canceled the plan in a matter of weeks as investors, fearing dilution, sold off the shares.

The company said on Tuesday that while the original issuance plan was called off, it still wanted to buy back the preferred shares due to higher dividend payments and risk of eventual dilution.

($1 = 112.6900 yen)

Reporting by Ritsuko Ando; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman

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