BenQ suffers losses, sells assets
TAIPEI, Taiwan — Taiwan's BenQ said it lost $600 million in the first nine months of the year, and intends to sell off some of its non-core assets in order to recover from a costly and futile effort to turnaround the cell phone business it acquired from Siemens.
BenQ's sales in the first nine months totaled $4.7 billion, excluding sales connected with the BenQ Mobile German subsidiary. When BenQ took over the troubled handset division of Siemens a year ago, it was losing about $1.5 million a day.
Things were so bad that Siemens paid BenQ to take it off their hands. During the last 12 months, BenQ has ponied up about $760 million to keep the former Siemens unit alive.
Last month, it threw in the towel and forced the unit into bankruptcy. This week, roughly two-thirds of the 3,000 workers in Germany were laid off and are fighting a bitter dispute over compensation from BenQ as well as the former parent Siemens.
(10/24/2006 10:40 AM EDT)