The private equity discussions are "not meant to formally solicit buyout bids for the overall company or some of its assets, and it's not immediately clear whether the engagement with buyout firms will result in formal offers in the future," Reuters reported.
On a related note, Western Digital is in discussions to merge with Kioxia -- a NAND flash memory company that Toshiba, Bain Capital Private Equity, and Hoya own.
Toshiba has danced with private equity firms multiple times in recent months. The discussions involved a potential $20 billion go-private deal with CVC Capital Partners in April 2021, but that deal was never consummated.
Toshiba is a multinational conglomerate headquartered in Minato, Tokyo. The company, founded in 1939, focuses on such markets as consumer electronics; building control systems; appliances; medical equipment; chips; and power systems, among other areas of expertise.
Toshiba Accounting Scandals, Business Changes
Accounting scandals have rocked Toshiba multiple times in recent years.
Amid the financial challenges, Toshiba sold a controlling stake in its flash-memory unit (now called Kioxia), while retaining a minority stake, and it has shed medical, consumer-electronics and appliance businesses to focus on industrial areas such as energy and infrastructure, The Journal notes.
Moreover, Toshiba sold off some of its telecom and unified communications assets in 2017, and shut down its overall Telecommunication System Division that same year.
Toshiba Satellite Laptops: Acquired, Relaunched By Sharp Dynabrook
Toshiba also sold its PC business to Sharp, which renamed the division Dynabook. In January 2021, Dynabook re-launched the famed Satellite Pro laptop series and announced a distribution relationship with Synnex.