By Yang Jie

 

TOKYO--Panasonic Corp. has sold its entire stake in Tesla Inc., a major electric-vehicle battery client, for about 400 billion yen ($3.61 billion).

The Japanese company said Friday it completed the share sale during the year ended March 2021.

Panasonic said it has notified Tesla of the transaction. It said in a written statement that the move wouldn't affect the supply of batteries to the U.S. carmaker and that the two companies continue to maintain a good relationship.

A Panasonic spokeswoman said the company intended to allocate the funds for growth investments, without giving details. Panasonic recently said it would buy U.S. supply-chain software provider Blue Yonder Holding Inc. from Blackstone Group Inc. and New Mountain Capital LLC for $7.1 billion in a bid to accelerate its software business.

Tesla didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Panasonic started to supply lithium-ion battery cells to Tesla in 2009 and the two jointly operate a battery factory in Nevada called the Gigafactory.

In 2010, Panasonic said purchased roughly 1.4 million Tesla shares at $21.15 each. The shares were worth about $730 million at the end of March 2020, according to the company's annual fiscal report. Since then, Tesla shares have soared on optimism about the future of electric vehicles. The closing price Thursday was $679.82, up 3.5% from a day earlier.

 

Write to Yang Jie at jie.yang@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

June 25, 2021 02:42 ET (06:42 GMT)

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