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Toshiba’s auction to sell its semiconductor business is nearing its conclusion as the company today signed the $18bn deal with a consortium of companies led by Bain Capital, which will see Toshiba retain a 40.1 per cent stake.

Bain’s consortium includes Apple, SK Hynix, Dell, Seagate Technology and Kingston Technology in various capacities, as well as Japan’s Hoya Corp, a medical technology firm that also makes parts for chip devices.

Hoya will take a 9.9 per cent stake which, along with Toshiba’s retention of a 40.2 per cent holding, will mean that the company nominally remains in Japanese hands, placating the Japanese government.

Apple is also expected to provide financial backing with the iPhone maker interested in securing a guaranteed supply of NAND flash storage chips for its products.