World News

Demand for masks crashes website of Japan’s Sharp

TOKYO (Reuters) – The website of Japanese electronics firm Sharp <6753.T> crashed on Tuesday after the company started selling face masks online, as Japan’s tally of coronavirus infections passed 11,000.

The company started accepting online orders for masks from 1000 local time, but the surge in traffic overwhelmed the website.

Sharp plans to sell 3,000 boxes a day, or 150,000 masks in total. It is hoping to boost daily production capacity to 500,000 masks.

Sharp, which makes smartphone screens, camera modules and sensors, decided to start producing masks at the end of February, following a government request.

A shortage of masks since the outbreak of the pandemic has prompted Japan’s government to distribute two cloth masks to each household.

(Reporting by Noriyuki Hirata, Sakura Murakami; Editing by Clarence Fernandez and Ed Osmond)