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End of an era Toshiba was the first company to bring a laptop PC to market in 1985, known as the T1100. Now, decades later, the company that played such an important role in mobile computing, is leaving the PC business behind.
In 2018, Toshiba saw the writing on the wall for its PC business, as it sold a majority stake (80.1%) to Sharp. Sharp, which now operates under Foxconn's conglomerate umbrella, would use the majority stake as a foothold to re-enter the PC market.
Under the terms of the sale, Sharp acquired most of Toshiba's products, technology, brands, and other assets that were formerly part of Toshiba's Client Solutions Group. Sharp then brought the business under the Dynabook brand, and Toshiba retained a 19.9 percent stake.
Toshiba's T1100, which used an Intel 80C88 CPU clocked at 4.77 MHz, 256kB of RAM, and a monochrome LCD display.
Now, a little over two years removed from the original sale, Toshiba has sold its remaining 19.9 percent stake in Dynabook to Sharp, thanks to a call option that was part of the agreement. As Toshiba's press release states, this makes Dynabook a wholly owned subsidiary of Sharp.
Toshiba's sale of its PC business back in 2018 was part of a broad restructuring amidst not only a waning PC market in which Toshiba was having trouble competing in, but also as the company was left reeling from its Westinghouse Electric and accounting scandal controversy.
Toshiba was forced to spin off its NAND business as Toshiba Memory Corporation, which eventually became Kioxia. Toshiba also sold off its TV business to HiSense, and sold Westinghouse Electric to Brookfield Business Partners.