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Dynabook plans Taiwan branch to tap Foxconn supply chain

Sharp-owned laptop maker sets sights on rivals' R&D talent

The Dynabook laptop brand moved under Sharp's umbrella last year when Toshiba sold its struggling PC business.   © Reuters

OSAKA -- Laptop maker Dynabook, a unit of Sharp, said Tuesday it will establish a Taiwanese subsidiary, leveraging the extensive supply network of Sharp's parent Foxconn as well as the talent pool in an industry hub.

The company will be set up in Taoyuan, a city close to Taipei, around May. Dynabook will deepen its coordination with Foxconn to procure components at a lower cost, boosting profit margins.

The Taiwanese unit will be responsible for developing local sales channels. It will also handle some design and development -- functions now handled mostly in Japan.

Dynabook is apparently looking to poach talent from Taiwanese rivals in order to shore up its design and development team. Acer, Asustek Computer and other big-name PC manufacturers are headquartered on the island, but their sales have ebbed in the face of competition from U.S. and other companies.

Sharp spent roughly 4 billion yen ($36 million) last October to purchase Toshiba Client Solutions -- Toshiba's struggling PC business and the creator of Dynabook laptops -- with the aim of turning it around using Foxconn resources. Sharp rebranded the company Dynabook this January.

Also known as Hon Hai Precision Industry, Foxconn is the world's largest contract manufacturer and counts Apple as a key client.

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