Sharp Corporation


Sharp Corporation is a Japanese multinational corporation that designs and manufactures electronic products, headquartered in Sakai-ku, Sakai. Since 2016 it has been a subsidiary of Taiwan-based Foxconn Group. Sharp employs more than 50,000 people worldwide. The company was founded in September 1912 in Tokyo and takes its name from one of its founder’s first inventions, the Ever-Sharp mechanical pencil, which was invented by Tokuji Hayakawa in 1915.
Sharp produced the first LCD calculator in 1973. Sharp had a working relationship with Nintendo during the 1980s, and was granted licensing rights for the manufacture and development of the C1 NES TV (1983, later released in North America as the Sharp Nintendo Television), the Twin Famicom (1986), the Sharp Famicom Titler (1989), and the SF-1 SNES TV (1990). All of these units are considered collectors items on the secondary market. One of the company’s main inventors of LCD calculators was Tadashi Sasaki.
On 25 February 2016, Foxconn announced its intent to acquire a 66% controlling stake in Sharp for 700 billion yen (US$6.24 billion). However, the deal was briefly delayed due to unforeseen financial liabilities; on 30 March 2016, Foxconn announced that it had agreed to pay US$3.5 billion for the stake instead, Foxconn wished to use the purchase to expand into direct-to-consumer product sales rather than serving as a contract manufacturer.
The first commercial camera phone was also made by Sharp for the Japanese market in November 2000. Recent products include the ViewCam, the Ultra-Lite notebook PC, the Zaurus personal digital assistant, Sidekick 3, and the AQUOS flat screen television.
Sharp manufactures consumer electronic products, including LCD televisions, sold under the Aquos brand, mobile phones, microwave ovens, Home cinema and audio systems, air purification systems, fax machines and calculators.
The same month, Sharp also announced a tie-up with Vestel in Europe for white goods. Vestel will sell Sharp-branded white goods (except air conditioners), such as refrigerators and microwave ovens manufactured by Sharp in Thailand and China. Sharp will also license its brand name to Vestel for volume home appliances such as refrigerators, washing machines and ovens. Sharp’s remaining European business will then focus on the business-to-business sector including multi-function printers and energy solutions.