6752.T - Panasonic Corporation

Tokyo - Tokyo Delayed Price. Currency in JPY
888.20
-18.80 (-2.07%)
At close: 3:15PM JST
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Previous Close907.00
Open896.40
Bid887.80 x 0
Ask888.60 x 0
Day's Range881.10 - 898.30
52 Week Range787.70 - 1,254.50
Volume10,016,500
Avg. Volume6,328,816
Market Cap2.072T
Beta (3Y Monthly)1.19
PE Ratio (TTM)7.50
EPS (TTM)118.50
Earnings DateOct 31, 2019
Forward Dividend & Yield30.00 (3.32%)
Ex-Dividend Date2019-09-27
1y Target Est1,450.90
  • Reuters

    UPDATE 4-Rescuers slog through mud as Japan typhoon death toll rises to 66

    The death toll in the worst typhoon to hit Japan for decades climbed to 66 on Tuesday as rescuers slogged through mud and debris in an increasingly grim search for the missing, and as thousands of homes remained without power or water. Fifteen people remain missing nearly three days after Typhoon Hagibis smashed into central and eastern Japan, national broadcaster NHK said. The highest toll was in Fukushima prefecture north of Tokyo, where levees burst in at least 14 places along the Abukuma River, which meanders through a number of cities in the largely agricultural prefecture.

  • Panasonic to Team up with IBM Japan in Improving Semiconductor Manufacturing Processes
    Business Wire

    Panasonic to Team up with IBM Japan in Improving Semiconductor Manufacturing Processes

    Co-development of new high-value-added system to reduce engineering costs, stabilize product quality, and improve factory productivity

  • Bloomberg

    Tesla’s Cell Supplier Hires Battery Expert for Key Gigafactory Job

    (Bloomberg) -- Panasonic Corp. has hired a former Tesla Inc. battery guru to a senior role at the so-called gigafactory the two companies share in the U.S.Celina Mikolajczak, who left Tesla in early 2018 for short stint at Uber Technologies Inc., joined Panasonic this month as vice president of battery technology. She’ll be based in Reno, Nevada, where Tesla and Panasonic produce electric vehicle battery packs for Model 3 sedans.“Celina is a leader in the lithium-ion industry who is widely recognized for her technical acumen and leadership,” Allan Swan, president of Panasonic Energy of North America, said in an emailed statement. “We look forward to the contributions she will make to the history-making work of our Reno team and the role we’re playing in making the electric vehicle future a reality.”Tesla and Panasonic have been partners since at least 2011, though they took their business relationship to another level three years later by agreeing to jointly build and operate the Nevada plant Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk estimated would cost about $5 billion.Musk engaged in a public Twitter spat with Panasonic earlier this year over the pace of expansion at the factory. Tesla is now nearing the start of production at the car plant it’s building on the outskirts of Shanghai and has agreed to buy batteries from South Korea’s LG Chem Ltd. for those vehicles, people familiar with the matter said in August.Mikolajczak was responsible for Uber’s battery programs, including its Jump electric bicycles and Elevate flight business. She worked at Tesla from 2012 to 2018, leading development and validation of batteries for Tesla’s electric cars and stationary-storage products.(Updates with Panasonic’s emailed statement in third paragraph)To contact the reporter on this story: Dana Hull in San Francisco at dhull12@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Craig Trudell at ctrudell1@bloomberg.net, Anne Riley MoffatFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • This could be the next gold mine for Tesla and other electric vehicles
    MarketWatch

    This could be the next gold mine for Tesla and other electric vehicles

    When people think about charging electric cars, the first thought that comes to mind is: “So you are going to put charging stations at gas stations. There will be long lines of people waiting to charge their cars, since it takes much longer to charge an electric car than to fill a car with gas. Capitalism will take care of building out the charging infrastructure.

  • ‘They Don’t Need Us Anymore’: Auto Workers Fear Electric Unrest
    Bloomberg

    ‘They Don’t Need Us Anymore’: Auto Workers Fear Electric Unrest

    (Bloomberg) -- The milkman went missing thanks to the rise of refrigerators. Switchboard operators were done in by the dawn of direct dialing. And in the car industry, auto workers are deathly afraid the engine assembler will give way to battery builders.Dread over the prospect that plug-in cars -- which have fewer parts and require less labor to build -- will doom auto jobs helped spark the first United Auto Workers strike against General Motors Co. in over a decade. Ford Motor Co. and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV, which are rolling their own battery-powered models to market in the coming years, could face a similar fate if they’re unable to quell the UAW’s concerns that widespread adoption of EVs endangers the employment of 35,000 union members.“There’s a potential for our jobs to be gone -- they don’t need us anymore,” said Tim Walbolt, president of the UAW local representing workers at a Fiat Chrysler transmission components plant near Toledo, Ohio. “It scares us.”For all the buzz generated by Tesla Inc., the EV era is still in its infancy, with zero-emission autos having reached just 2% of global production. GM has extended the UAW an offer to get in on the ground floor, pitching a new battery plant staffed by dues-paying union members in an Ohio town jarred by job loss. But the overture came with a catch: GM wants to pay the workers less, and the facility is unlikely to need as many staff as an engine or transmission factory would.A recent study of electric-vehicle production in Europe by consultant AlixPartners found that it took 40% fewer hours to assemble an electric motor and battery than a traditional internal-combustion engine and transmission.“It’s a bad news story from a labor perspective,” said Mark Wakefield, the head of AlixPartners’s automotive practice. “You would just fundamentally need less people.”Perversely, GM also arguably has uncertainty on its side at the bargaining table. It’s going to want concessions to cushion itself against the risk that consumer adoption of electric autos remains slow. The carmaker isn’t fully utilizing the factory that builds the Chevrolet Bolt EV north of Detroit, and tepid demand for the plug-in hybrid Chevy Volt put the future of the factory that assembles it in nearby Hamtramck in doubt.Collision CourseThe collision with carmakers over electrification is one the UAW saw coming.“Electric, to me, is where the real risk is to our membership,” Jennifer Kelly, the union’s research director, said during a collective-bargaining conference in Detroit earlier this year.It’s almost certain to carry over from the UAW’s talks with GM to negotiations with Detroit’s other automakers. Ford has estimated electric cars will require 30% fewer hours of labor per vehicle and 50% less factory floor space.“Rationalization of the powertrain portfolio is certainly a huge opportunity for all of us as we start this transition,” Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s automotive president, told investors on an earnings call in April.Even Fiat Chrysler, a laggard with regard to electrification, has stoked fear at union halls linked to internal-combustion components plants, where rumors are flying that the company plans to outsource work to lower-paying suppliers.“We cannot help but feel like the left behind stepchildren of the UAW,” Mike Booth, the president of the union’s local in Marysville, Michigan, wrote in a letter to the labor group’s Chrysler council last month. He and other UAW leaders fear that German mega-supplier ZF Friedrichshafen AG, which took over operation of a Chrysler axle plant in 2008, will take work away from the automaker’s machining facility near Toledo and a transmission and castings complex in Kokomo, Indiana.A Fiat Chrysler spokeswoman categorically denied that another company is seeking to take work from the Toledo or Kokomo operations and called them critical to the automaker’s business. ZF will continue to work with the UAW in Marysville, and an arrangement in which Fiat Chrysler licenses technology from the supplier in Kokomo may be creating some confusion, a spokesman said. He declined to comment on Toledo.‘Shrinking Bubble’In August, GM shut down a transmission plant outside Detroit, affecting more than 260 workers as part of a larger restructuring. That may foreshadow other closures as EV production ramps up. The supply chain is where the job risk is greatest, especially for workers employed making engines, transmissions and sub-components that aren’t needed in EVs.Consultant IHS Markit predicts the introduction of new gas-powered engine families will drop to zero in 2022, from nearly 70 in 2011, as automakers shift spending to electric propulsion. The market for a whole range of parts used in internal combustion vehicles -- such as axles, mufflers, fuel tanks and transmissions -- will shrink in a range from 6% to 20% by 2025, according to a study by Deloitte Consulting.“The value chain is shifting and companies and their unions are going to have to figure out how to change themselves or risk becoming part of a shrinking bubble,” said Neal Ganguli, head of the auto supply base group at Deloitte’s U.S. automotive practice.That’s a problem because engines and transmissions currently account for just under half of automaker manufacturing capacity, Credit Suisse auto analyst Dan Levy estimated in a Sept. 23 note to investors. As a result, automakers may face labor, social and political challenges as they transition to EVs, he wrote.‘Rough Time’GM’s EV factory in Lake Orion, Michigan, offers a window into what the UAW is worried about.While the plant is unionized, the automaker staffs it in part with lower-wage employees under a special contract. What’s more, 64% of the fully electric Bolt model’s content is made in Korea, including the battery.One of the biggest suppliers is Seoul-based LG Chem Ltd., which makes cells in South Korea and assembles packs for GM and Fiat Chrysler at a non-union plant in western Michigan with a starting wage for technicians of $16 an hour.That’s close to what Ford pays its entry-level temporary workers, but far below the $28 to $30 an hour for legacy UAW employees. Temp workers at Ford’s engine and transmission plants also can move up into legacy wage brackets, which isn’t the case at LG’s facility.“The move to electric could weaken the union further,” Joshua Murray, a labor expert and assistant professor of sociology at Vanderbilt University. “Certainly, the UAW is going to have to try to organize the battery plants, but I think they’ll have a rough time.”Imported BatteriesNo major automaker entirely outsources engines, in no small part thanks to displacement and horsepower being the source of marketing buzz and bragging rights for decades. EVs are a different story -- even Tesla relies heavily on Japan’s Panasonic Corp. in the making of its battery packs.Batteries -- the single most expensive part of an electric vehicle -- are almost exclusively manufactured overseas and mostly by companies relatively new to the automotive powertrain, such as China’s Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Ltd. and South Korea’s SK Innovation Co.SK Innovation broke ground earlier this year on a new battery factory outside of Atlanta, which will employ some 2,000 non-union workers. And CEO Jun Kim thinks carmakers will have a tough time replicating what his company does.“There is a difference between the DNA of automakers and battery makers such as us,” Kim said in a March interview. “There are only a handful of battery suppliers that are capable of delivering high-quality products while guaranteeing cost competitiveness.”\--With assistance from David Welch.To contact the reporters on this story: Chester Dawson in Southfield at cdawson54@bloomberg.net;Keith Naughton in Southfield, Michigan at knaughton3@bloomberg.net;Gabrielle Coppola in New York at gcoppola@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Craig Trudell at ctrudell1@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • India Is Planning a Huge China-Style Facial Recognition Program
    Bloomberg

    India Is Planning a Huge China-Style Facial Recognition Program

    (Bloomberg) -- India is planning to set up one of the world’s largest facial recognition systems, potentially a lucrative opportunity for surveillance companies and a nightmare for privacy advocates who fear it will lead to a Chinese-style Orwellian state.Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government will open bids next month to build a system to centralize facial recognition data captured through surveillance cameras across India. It would link up with databases containing records for everything from passports to fingerprints to help India’s depleted police force identify criminals, missing persons and dead bodies.The government says the move is designed to help one of the world’s most understaffed police forces, which has one officer for every 724 citizens -- well below global norms. It also could be a boon for companies: TechSci Research estimates India’s facial recognition market will grow sixfold by 2024 to $4.3 billion, nearly on par with China.But the project is also ringing alarm bells in a nation with no data privacy laws and a government that just shut down the internet for the last seven weeks in the key state of Kashmir to prevent unrest. While India is still far from implementing a system that matches China’s ability to use technology to control the population, the lack of proper safeguards opens the door for abuses.“We’re the only functional democracy which will set up such as system without any data protection or privacy laws,” said Apar Gupta, a Delhi-based lawyer and executive director of the Internet Freedom Foundation, a non-profit group whose members successfully lobbied the government in 2015 to ensure net neutrality and reject platforms like Facebook Inc.’s Free Basics. “It’s like a gold rush for companies seeking large unprotected databases.”Black MarketA draft data protection bill presented to the government last year still hasn’t been approved by the cabinet or introduced into parliament. The country has already had problems implementing Aadhaar, one of the world’s biggest biometric databases linking everything from bank accounts to income tax filings, which been plagued by reports of data leaks and the growth of a black market for personal information.So far, not much is known about which companies might bid on the facial-recognition system. Minutes of a meeting with potential bidders, obtained by the Internet Freedom Foundation through a right to information request, showed unidentified companies sought clarifications on integrating facial recognition data with state databases and whether it should be able to identify people with plastic surgery.Vasudha Gupta, a spokeswoman for the Home Ministry, didn’t respond to an email seeking comments about the system.For some in the police force, the system will be an essential tool to fight crime if implemented properly. India has seen more than 100 terrorist attacks in the last three decades, including one on luxury hotels and a train station in Mumbai that killed 166 people in 2008.‘Powerful Tool’Nilabh Kishore, who headed a unit fighting organized crime in the state of Punjab until last year, had success against gangsters after he set up a system linking data from police stations across the state.“A system that can identify criminals is invaluable -- facial recognition is a powerful tool,” said Kishore, who is now deputy inspector general of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police. “But human intentions are also very important. You can make the best of technology, but if human intentions are wrong it can be a tool for misuse.”That’s particularly a worry for vulnerable minority groups that have long faced discrimination in India. Lower castes and tribals account for about a quarter of the population but constitute 34% of India’s prisoners, according to the National Dalit Movement for Justice.In January, the Delhi High Court said it was “unacceptable“ that facial recognition had not helped trace any of the 5,000 children missing from the city in three years. Earlier this month, photos and phone numbers from a Madurai city police facial recognition database in the southern state of Tamil Nadu were leaked online.Surveillance ThreatThe threat of foreign spying is also persistent. Last month a federal government think tank criticized the local administration in Delhi for hiring the Indian arm of Chinese firm Hikvision to set up 150,000 CCTVs, saying the move could spur illegal hacking and data leaks to the Chinese government.Foreign surveillance companies operating in India include CP Plus, Dahua, Panasonic Corp., Bosch Security Systems, Honeywell International Inc., and D-Link India Ltd. Many Indian companies won’t be able to bid on the facial-recognition system because the current tender requires them to meet standards established by the U.S. National Institute of Science and Technology, according to Atul Rai, chief executive officer of Staqu Technologies, an Indian startup.Rai, whose company has developed facial recognition for eight local police forces, said India doesn’t have the same quality cameras as China -- making it harder to meet the goal of being able to identify any person with an integrated system. He also said it would be more difficult to implement a national network in India because state governments are responsible for law and order under its constitution.“But if this one happens in line with the government’s plan, it should be a China-like system,” Rai said. “Any powerful country wants to be like China when it comes to using technology to monitor people -- even western countries.”\--With assistance from Santosh Kumar.To contact the reporter on this story: Archana Chaudhary in New Delhi at achaudhary2@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Ruth Pollard at rpollard2@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Panasonic to Provide Additional Automated Facial Recognition Gates for Passport Control at Airports in Japan
    Business Wire

    Panasonic to Provide Additional Automated Facial Recognition Gates for Passport Control at Airports in Japan

    Panasonic Corporation announced that it will be providing additional automated facial recognition gates for use at an expanded number of airports in Japan and also for newly expanded use in departure procedures for foreign travelers. The additional order will bring the total number of automated gates to 203 units across the country (123 units to be used for foreign nationals).

  • Reuters

    REFILE-UPDATE 2-Toyota using Tesla-style Panasonic batteries for China hybrids - sources

    Toyota Motor Corp has started using the same type of battery that Panasonic Corp designed for Tesla Inc in some of its plug-in hybrids sold in China, sources familiar with the matter said. Toyota is using Panasonic's cylindrical batteries in its new Corolla and Levin plug-in hybrid sedans launched in China this year, one of the people said.

  • Reuters

    UPDATE 1-Toyota using made-for-Tesla Panasonic batteries for China hybrids -Nikkei

    Toyota Motor Corp has started using batteries that Panasonic Corp designed for Tesla Inc in some of its plug-in hybrids sold in China, the Nikkei business daily reported on Friday. Toyota is using Panasonic's cylindrical batteries in its new Corolla and Levin plug-in hybrid sedans launched in China this year, the Nikkei said, without citing sources. Toyota, which also uses Panasonic's prismatic batteries for hybrids, is believed to have ordered about 50,000 of the cylindrical batteries, as the automaker struggles to secure stable supplies of high-quality batteries to meet growing demand, the paper said.

  • Toyota using Tesla-style Panasonic batteries for China hybrids: sources
    Reuters

    Toyota using Tesla-style Panasonic batteries for China hybrids: sources

    Toyota Motor Corp has started using the same type of battery that Panasonic Corp designed for Tesla Inc in some of its plug-in hybrids sold in China, sources familiar with the matter said. Toyota is using Panasonic's cylindrical batteries in its new Corolla and Levin plug-in hybrid sedans launched in China this year, one of the people said. The batteries are the same size as those that Panasonic makes for Tesla, but the composition is different, said the sources, who declined to be identified as the matter is private.

  • Is Panasonic a Buy?
    Motley Fool

    Is Panasonic a Buy?

    The Japanese technology giant's shares are dirt cheap today. Is that a warning sign or a buying opportunity?

  • Reuters

    UPDATE 2-Tesla in advanced talks with LG Chem on battery supply in China-source

    SEOUL/SHANGHAI Aug 23 (Reuters) - U.S. electric vehicle maker Tesla Inc is in advanced talks with South Korea's LG Chem Ltd to source batteries for vehicles to be made in its Shanghai plant, a person familiar with the matter said. The move represents a push by Tesla to diversify sources of the key component for its electric vehicles from its exclusive supplier, Japan's Panasonic Corp. Another source said LG Chem agreed to supply batteries for Tesla's China plant, without elaborating.

  • Thomson Reuters StreetEvents

    Edited Transcript of 6752.T earnings conference call or presentation 31-Jul-19 10:59am GMT

    Q1 2020 Panasonic Corp Earnings Presentation

  • Bloomberg

    Big Tech Needs to Save the Deep Seas

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- At some point in the next decade, a large, tractor-like device will start crawling the deepest seafloor, gathering potato-sized nuggets packed with metals crucial to electric vehicles, renewable-energy storage and smartphones. Nobody knows how badly this industrialization of the deep sea could damage the marine environment. Even proponents concede that it'll disrupt and permanently erase habitats that have been barely explored, much less understood.It's a bleak scenario and -- for now, at least -- it's on a fast track. In July, parties to an international organization chartered to oversee such mining moved closer to their goal of approving regulations by the end of 2020. Environmentalists and scientists have taken part in those discussions. But the companies that will use those minerals in their products -- electric-car makers such as Tesla Inc., battery makers such as Panasonic Corp., and consumer-technology companies such as Apple Inc. -- have remained silent. If the worst impacts from deep-sea mining are to be avoided, they need to speak up.The deep ocean, generally defined as waters at depths of 200 meters (656 feet) or more, accounts for 45% of the earth's surface and 95% of its habitable space. For centuries, humans believed that much of it was barren of life. But in recent decades exploration technology has advanced quickly, enabling scientists to identify approximately 250,000 species in the dark, cold depths. And that's just start: Researchers estimate there could be as many as 1.75 million more species yet to be discovered, along with 500 million different types of microorganisms.That biodiversity is threatened by an overweening global demand for metals and minerals. Last year, researchers in Germany warned of global cobalt shortages by 2050, spurred by increasing demand for energy storage in renewable-energy installations and electric vehicles. In May, a Tesla official told a gathering of miners, regulators and lawmakers that the company projects a looming shortage of copper, nickel and lithium -- all critical to making batteries and other car parts. Terrestrial resources are increasingly unattractive due to environmental, safety and cost concerns.The deep ocean would appear to offer an alternative. Current estimates are that just one section of seafloor -- the Clarion-Clipperton Zone that stretches from Hawaii to Baja -- contains more cobalt, manganese and nickel than all known terrestrial resources, as well as significant deposits of copper and other metals. In June, DeepGreen Metals Inc., a Canadian deep-sea mining startup, secured most of a $150 million package to facilitate feasibility studies in the area. Deep-sea mining, the company claims, will yield "ethical, clean metals" with "no blasting, drilling, deforestation or impact on people."That's one way to look at it. The other is more troubling. DeepGreen aims to dig up trillions of metal-rich rocks known as polymetallic nodules. Formed over tens of millions of years, those rocks now support unique lifeforms and habitats on their surfaces. Once they’re gone, so are those organisms -- probably permanently.In 1989, researchers dragged a plough designed to mimic seafloor mining across a section of the CCZ, then returned over subsequent years to measure how quickly the habitats recovered. More than a quarter century later, during a 2015 survey, they found that "diversity and community composition had not recovered." Researchers warned that the loss of nodules could cause changes that will last over "geologic timescales" and will impact food chains beyond the deep seafloor.Remarkably, that research represents the only long-term study ever done on the impact of deep-sea mining. Indeed, according to the U.S. government, over 80% of the seafloor remains "unmapped, unobserved and unexplored." Proposed regulations being drafted by the International Seabed Authority, the global organization chartered by treaty to both protect and commercialize the seafloor, will require environmental impact statements before mining occurs, as well as careful observation during the mining. But, without long-term baseline studies, those impact statements will be more guesswork than science. This uncertainty poses serious ethical and reputational problems for the electric-car companies, battery manufacturers and other purveyors of “green” technology that hope to benefit from seafloor mining. How will Tesla's customers react if the company's battery supply chain is traced to the extinction of a photogenic species such as the adorable albino octopus, which lays its eggs on polymetallic nodules? Is Apple prepared to risk its hard-won green reputation if reports show its phone batteries have led to the collapse of fisheries dependent upon deep-sea life? It's worth recalling that a 2015 video of a straw in a turtle's nose spawned the global movement against disposable plastics that's now upending decisions at some of the world's largest petrochemical companies.Last year the European Parliament called for a moratorium on deep-sea mining until the impact on marine environments, biodiversity and human activities at sea are better understood. It's a reasonable request that companies should embrace, if only as a means of ensuring that their reputations aren't damaged later.Firms could also demand better research, perhaps under the auspices of organizations such as the Responsible Minerals Initiative, a global consortium that helps some of the world's largest companies source metals and minerals using responsible standards. Only after miners and their customers understand the deep sea can they -- collectively -- decide what kind of biodiversity loss is worth a battery, windmill or a sleeker smartphone.(Corrects details of turtle video in ninth paragraph. )To contact the author of this story: Adam Minter at aminter@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Nisid Hajari at nhajari@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Adam Minter is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist. He is the author of “Junkyard Planet: Travels in the Billion-Dollar Trash Trade” and the forthcoming "Secondhand: Travels in the New Global Garage Sale."For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Panasonic first-quarter profit nearly halves on China, Tesla woes
    Reuters

    Panasonic first-quarter profit nearly halves on China, Tesla woes

    Panasonic Corp reported its first-quarter operating profit nearly halved, as Sino-U.S. trade tensions dampened demand for its components business in China and the battery business with Tesla Inc remained in the red. The trade dispute is making it more painful for Panasonic to execute its strategy of shifting focus to corporate clients and automakers from consumer electronics, after Tesla's production delays already posed challenges to the goal. Higher U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods battered sales of Panasonic's electronic devices, while the slumping automotive market in China prompted the auto industry to scale back manufacturing investment and took a toll on factory equipment sales.

  • Reuters

    UPDATE 2-Panasonic Q1 profit nearly halves on China, Tesla woes

    Panasonic Corp reported its first-quarter operating profit nearly halved, as Sino-U.S. trade tensions dampened demand for its components business in China and the battery business with Tesla Inc remained in the red. The trade dispute is making it more painful for Panasonic to execute its strategy of shifting focus to corporate clients and automakers from consumer electronics, after Tesla's production delays already posed challenges to the goal. Higher U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods battered sales of Panasonic's electronic devices, while the slumping automotive market in China prompted the auto industry to scale back manufacturing investment and took a toll on factory equipment sales.

  • Reuters

    UPDATE 1-Chipmaker TowerJazz Q2 profit drops less than forecast, to expand capacity

    Chip manufacturer TowerJazz posted a drop in second quarter profit as revenue fell due to a price cut for a renewed contract, and said it would invest $100 million to expand production capacity at a plant in Japan to meet growing demand. The Israeli company, which specialises in analogue chips used in cars, medical sensors and power management, posted on Monday diluted earnings per share excluding one-time items of 24 cents in the quarter, down from 42 cents a year earlier.

  • Moody's

    Panasonic Corporation -- Moody's assigns A3 rating to Panasonic's US dollar bonds

    Rating Action: Moody's assigns A3 rating to Panasonic's US dollar bonds. Global Credit Research- 11 Jul 2019. Total US $2,500 Million of New Debt Securities Rated.

  • Banned Chinese Security Cameras Are Almost Impossible to Remove
    Bloomberg

    Banned Chinese Security Cameras Are Almost Impossible to Remove

    (Bloomberg) -- U.S. federal agencies have five weeks to rip out Chinese-made surveillance cameras in order to comply with a ban imposed by Congress last year in an effort to thwart the threat of spying from Beijing.But thousands of the devices are still in place and chances are most won’t be removed before the Aug. 13 deadline. A complex web of supply chain logistics and licensing agreements make it almost impossible to know whether a security camera is actually made in China or contains components that would violate U.S. rules. The National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, which outlines the budget and spending for the Defense Department each year, included an amendment for fiscal 2019 that would ensure federal agencies do not purchase Chinese-made surveillance cameras. The amendment singles out Zhejiang Dahua Technology Co. and Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co., both of which have raised security concerns with the U.S. government and surveillance industry.Hikvision is 42% controlled by the Chinese government. Dahua, in 2017, was found by cybersecurity company ReFirm Labs to have cameras with covert back doors that allowed unauthorized people to tap into them and send information to China. Dahua said at the time that it fixed the issue and published a public notice about the vulnerability. The U.S. government is considering imposing further restrictions by banning both companies from purchasing American technology, people familiar with the matter said in May. “Video surveillance and security equipment sold by Chinese companies exposes the U.S. government to significant vulnerabilities,” said Representative Vicky Hartzler, a Republican from Missouri, who helped draft the amendment. Removing the cameras will “ensure that China cannot create a video surveillance network within federal agencies,” she said at the time.Dahua declined to comment on the ban. In a company statement, Hikvision said it complies with all applicable laws and regulations and has made efforts to ensure its products are secure. A company spokesman added that the Chinese government is not involved in the day-to-day operations of Hikvision. "The company is independent in business, management, assets, organization and finance from its controlling shareholders," the spokesman said.Despite the looming deadline to satisfy the NDAA, at least 1,700 Hikvision and Dahua cameras are still operating in places where they’ve been banned, according to San Jose, California-based Forescout Technologies, which has been hired by some federal agencies to determine what systems are running on their networks. The actual number is likely much higher, said Katherine Gronberg, vice president of government affairs at Forescout, because only a small percentage of government offices actually know what cameras they’re operating. The agencies that use software to track devices connected to their networks should be able to comply with the law and remove the cameras in time, Gronberg said. “The real issue is for organizations that don’t have the tools in place to detect the banned devices,” she added. Several years ago the Department of Homeland Security tried to force all federal agencies to secure their networks by tracking every connected device. As of December, only 35% of required agencies had fully complied with this mandate, according to a 2018 report by the Government Accountability Office. As a result, most U.S. federal agencies still don’t know how many or what type of devices are connected to their networks and are now left trying to identify the cameras manually, one by one. Those charged with complying with the ban have discovered it’s much more complicated than just switching off all Hikvision or Dahua-labeled cameras. Not only can Chinese cameras come with U.S. labels, but many of the devices, including those made by Hikvision, are likely to contain parts from Huawei Technologies Co., the target of a broad government crackdown and whose chips power about 60% of surveillance cameras. “There are all kinds of shadowy licensing agreements that prevent us from knowing the true scope of China’s foothold in this market,” said Peter Kusnic, a technology writer at business research firm The Freedonia Group. “I’m not sure it will even be possible to ever fully identify all of these cameras, let alone remove them. The sheer number is insurmountable.” Video surveillance is big business in the U.S. Sales of video cameras to the government are projected to climb to $705 million in 2021 from $570 million in 2016, according to The Freedonia Group. Hikvision is the world’s largest video-surveillance provider, with cameras installed in U.S. businesses, banks, airports, schools, Army bases and government offices. Its cameras can produce sharp, full-color images in fog and near-total darkness and use artificial intelligence and 3D imaging to power facial recognition systems on a vast scale.Once they arrive in the country, some of Dahua and Hikvision’s cameras are sent to their U.S.-based warehouses. Others go to equipment manufacturers like Panasonic Corp. or Honeywell International Inc., and are sold under those brands, said John Honovich, founder of video surveillance site IPVM. Then the cameras are bought by intermediaries, such as security firms, which go on to sell them to government agencies and private businesses. The NDAA also covers Dahua and Hikvision’s extensive agreements with original equipment manufacturers, sweeping up any vendor who re-sells the devices or uses the companies’ equipment.Effectively,  two cameras running identical Hikvision firmware could carry completely different labels and packaging. This means it would be nearly impossible to tell if the thousands of video cameras installed across the country are actually re-labelled Chinese devices. A Honeywell spokeswoman said the company couldn’t track these re-labelled products, even if asked. Panasonic didn’t respond to emailed requests for comment.This convoluted supply chain has left government agencies confused over how to actually obey the law. “We’ve been trying to get our arms around how big the problem is,” says a government worker at the Department of Energy, who asked to remain anonymous because he’s not authorized to speak publicly. “I don’t think we have the full picture on how many of these cameras are really out there,” he said.The law itself is vague on whether it means agencies must remove the cameras or simply stop renewing existing contracts. A group of government officials and experts will meet next week in Washington to try to parse the legislation. Hikvision has about 50,000 installation companies and integrated partners that are all wondering how broadly the law is likely to be interpreted.Many have contacted the company, asking how they could be affected, according to a person familiar with the discussions. Some security vendors are already refusing to purchase equipment from Hikvision and Dahua. Shares of both companies have tumbled since March amid speculation of U.S. sanctions. Last month U.S. President Donald Trump said he would allow U.S. companies to resume supplying some of their products to Huawei, if they apply for a license and if there is no threat to national security.If someone is routinely tapping into cameras to spy on federal agencies, they could easily determine the identities of those who work in government departments and even CIA operatives, said Stephen Bryen, former deputy under-secretary of defense for trade security policy. “This is extremely dangerous,” he said. “It can’t be tolerated and quite frankly every agency should be writing its own directives to make sure the job gets done.”(Updates with Trump policy on granting licenses to Huawei suppliers.  An earlier version of this story corrected the location of Forescout Technologies.)To contact the author of this story: Olivia Carville in New York at ocarville1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Molly Schuetz at mschuetz9@bloomberg.net, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.