Panasonic forms alliance with SANYO
Panasonic and SANYO have entered into a Capital and Business Alliance Agreement 
Panasonic Corporation and SANYO Electric Co., Ltd., upon the resolutions of the meetings of their respective Boards of Directors held on December 19, 2008, recently announced that they have entered into the Capital and Business Alliance Agreement. Panasonic will aim to acquire the majority of the voting rights of SANYO assuming full dilution (which takes into account conversion of Class A preferred stock and Class B preferred stock into common stock) by means of a public tender offer bid. Panasonic and SANYO will form a close alliance in business with the prospect of organizational restructurings of both companies.

Panasonic will commence the tender offer as soon as is practical, subject to, among other conditions, completion of the procedures and the measures that are necessary under domestic and overseas competition laws and regulations. It is expected to take a certain amount of time for the procedures of the regulatory authorities to be completed. Therefore, no later than around the end of February next year, the progress up to that time will be disclosed.

Purpose of Capital and Business Alliance

Panasonic has been challenging under the "Panasonic" brand to generate "ideas for life" for the future. Through innovative thinking, Panasonic is committed to enriching people's lives around the world and thereby contributing to the development of society and future of the world. On the other hand, SANYO has been seeking to become a "Leading company for energy and environment," which significantly contributes to enhancing the global environment and enriching people's lives through its proprietary technology and products, under its management philosophy stating "We are committed to becoming an indispensable element in the lives of people all over the world." 

Panasonic and SANYO recognize that existing strategies must not only be accelerated,  but also that drastic action is now required for further strengthening initiatives to achieve potential revenue and profit growth in the global economic recession stemming from the financial crisis as well as in the midst of intensified global competition.

Combining the accumulated technologies and manufacturing knowledge of both companies, Panasonic and SANYO believe that together they will evolve into a corporate group which will be highly admired globally by enhancing the quality of life for the people worldwide and becoming a business entity coexisting in harmony with the global environment. This will be done with the aim of maximizing both companies' corporate values by pursuing synergies between both companies further strengthening global competitiveness through this alliance.

Expected Effect of Collaboration between Panasonic and SANYO

Panasonic and SANYO believe that, through this alliance, a strong collaboration between both companies will be established in a wide range of business fields. The primary synergy effects that are currently expected are as follows:

Solar Business

By utilizing the business platform of Panasonic, the companies aim to respond to the demand for solar batteries for which significant future growth is expected, through (i) further expanding business in the area of highly efficient HIT (crystalline silicon) solar photovoltaic cells and modules (batteries) and (ii) acceleration of development and commercializtion of next-generation solar cells. In addition, by utilizing the domestic and overseas sales platforms of the Panasonic Group, a significant increase in sales can be expected.

Rechargeable Battery Business (Moblie Energy)

SANYO has established its status as a leading company in the rechargeable battery business focused on lithium-ion rechargeable batteries. In addition, Panasonic has utilized its original black box technology and expanded its business globally. By making this alliance, the companies will further strengthen both of their competitiveness through, among others, (i) the introduction of SANYO's excellent production technology to Panasonic and (ii) the provision of Panasonic's high-capacity technology to SANYO.Active investments will be made in batteries for HEV (Hybrid Electric Vehicle) and EV (Electric Vehicle), for which future rapid market growth is expected, and together as the Panasonic Group, it is believed that collaboration with automakers can be strengthened and sales significantly expanded.

Strengthening Financial and Business Position

By SANYO becoming a member of the Panasonic Group, (i) reductions in company-wide procurement costs in areas such as materials purchasing or (ii) reductions in logistics-related costs are expected in SANYO. In addition, by introducing Panasonic's original cost reduction know-how, such as "Itakona" or "Cost Busters," to SANYO, further strengthening of the financial and business position will be a primary goal for achievement.

 Combining the accumulated technologies and manufacturing knowledge of both companies, Panasonic and SANYO believe that together they will evolve into a corporate group which will be highly admired globally

Also, in accordance with the alliance agreement reached today, Panasonic and SANYO will set up a "Collaboration Committee," and the said committee shall consider, to the extent permitted under the applicable laws and regulations, various items, such as management systems, technology development, procurement, logistics, quality control and IT infrastructure, in order to achieve the outcomes of collaboration between the two companies as soon as possible after making SANYO a subsidiary of Panasonic. In addition, Panasonic will consider various options including a possible investment of around 100 billion yen in order to achieve the synergy of both companies.

Tender Offer

Panasonic will commence a tender offer bid for the purchase of all shares of SANYO (including all of common stock, Class A preferred stock and Class B preferred stock) (the "Tender Offer"), subject to, among other conditions, completion of the procedures and measures that are necessary under applicable domestic and overseas competition laws and regulations. Upon the Tender Offer, the purchase price will be 131 yen per share of common stock, 1,310 yen per share of Class A preferred stock and 1,310 yen per share of Class B preferred stock. Panasonic has received an opinion from Merrill Lynch Japan Securities Co., Ltd. that, under certain assumptions, those purchase prices are fair from a financial point of view to Panasonic. The minimum number of shares to be purchased in the Tender Offer will be a majority of issued shares of SANYO (excluding its own shares held by SANYO and assuming full dilution where Class A preferred stock and Class B preferred stock are converted into common stock). No purchase will be made if the total number of shares which are tendered for sale in the Tender Offer falls short of the minimum number of shares to be purchased. In case that more shares than the minimum number to be purchased are tendered for sale in the Tender Offer, all of such shares tendered for sale will be purchased.

Oceans Holdings Co., Ltd. (an affiliate company of Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.), Evolution Investments Co., Ltd. (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Daiwa Securities SMBC Principal Investments Co., Ltd.) and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, which are the major shareholders of SANYO, are positively considering the sale of SANYO shares in the Tender Offer. The

 Panasonic will commence a tender offer bid for the purchase of all shares of SANYO (including all of common stock, Class A preferred stock and Class B preferred stock) (the "Tender Offer"), subject to, among other conditions, completion of the procedures and measures that are necessary under applicable domestic and overseas competition laws and regulations

aggregate number of shares of SANYO (assuming that Class A preferred shares and Class B preferred shares are converted into shares of common stock) held by the three companies is 4,328,993,781 shares which is equal to approximately 70.5% of voting rights assuming full dilution, and in the case where all shares of SANYO held by the three companies were tendered for sale in the Tender Offer, the Tender Offer shall be expected to be settled.

In addition, SANYO supports the Tender Offer and will express its affirmative view on the Tender Offer if it is commenced. Panasonic basically plans to convert Class A preferred stock and Class B preferred stock of SANYO which Panasonic has acquired into common stock of SANYO (alternatively, the major shareholders may convert Class A preferred stock and Class B preferred stock into common stock and subsequently tender the common stock in the Tender Offer). Each share of Class A preferred stock or Class B preferred stock is convertible into ten shares of common stock, and if all of Class A preferred stock and Class B preferred stock are converted into common stock, the number of issued shares of common stock (excluding its own shares held by SANYO and assuming full dilution) shall be 6,142,207,315 shares. Although Class B preferred stock has no voting rights, the total number of voting rights of SANYO assuming full dilution shall increase as a result of the conversion of such Class B preferred stock into common stock.

Maintenance of Listing

Panasonic and SANYO are of the same view that SANYO will maintain the listing of its  common stock on the stock exchanges after consummation of the Tender Offer, and in the event that the results of the Tender Offer may possibly lead to the violation of the listing requirements, both companies shall consult each other to deliberate on the measures to be taken in order to avoid delisting of SANYO common stock.

 

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