Toshiba Set To Acquire IBM’s POS Business For $850m

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Deal would see Toshiba Tec become ‘world’s foremost retail point-of-sale systems company’

Toshiba Tec has announced it will acquire IBM’s Retail Store Solutions (RSS) business in a deal worth $850 million (£533m).

The Japanese retail technology company, a subsidiary of Toshiba Corp, will take over all of IBM’s development, sales and related in-store maintenance for point-of-sale (POS) solutions, gaining a worldwide network for its own products and services.

Point-of-sale partnership

Toshiba Tec will also become an IBM Premier Business Partner for Smarter Commerce in a multi-year agreement intended to address “the growing demand of multi-channel commerce” by offering enterprise-level services to customers around the world.

“This acquisition by Toshiba TEC creates not only the world’s leading point-of-sale company, but also a key business partner for IBM in its strategically important Smarter Commerce initiative,” said Craig Hayman, general manager of industry solutions at IBM. “Retailers can invest with confidence in the proven abilities of these two leaders to deliver multi-channel commerce to more demanding consumers who want the same experience shopping online, in-store, mobile, social or by any other means.”

The transaction will create a new holding company in Japan, owned 80.1 percent by Toshiba Tec and 19.9 percent by IBM. Eventually, the former will take full control, but IBM will stick around to ensure a smooth transfer of operations. Another new company will be based in North Carolina and headed up by Steven Ladwig, IBM’s RSS general manager.

Using IBM’s existing sales network in the US and the rest of the world, Toshiba is hoping to target new customers including fast food restaurants, specialty stores and mass merchandisers.

“Toshiba TEC enjoys a strong presence in retail store solutions in Asia-Pacific, including Japan, and we are confident that this acquisition will support expansion in North America, Europe and the emerging economies,” said Toshiba president and CEO Norio Sasaki in a statement. “I also expect this significant step to support innovation and the creation of new business opportunities for Toshiba Group.”

The deal is expected to be completed in the late second or early third quarter of 2012 subject to regulatory analysis.

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