Sichuan Changhong Electric, one of the mainland's largest television makers, said it was in talks to buy a 24 per cent stake in washing-machine maker Wuxi Little Swan, hoping to diversify into other businesses amid keen competition. Changhong's statement came after Wuxi Little Swan on Tuesday said its controlling shareholder Wuxi Guolian Development (Group) plans to sell its entire 24.01 per cent stake in the company. 'We are interested in developing washing-machine business,' Changhong said in a statement filed with the Shanghai Stock Exchange. 'We are concerned about the restructuring plan of Wuxi Little Swan and have contacted Wuxi Guolian and Wuxi city government to discuss this. However, we have not yet reached an agreement.' No financial details were given concerning the matter. Mainland electronics makers are expanding into appliances through acquisitions as competition from Sony Corp of Japan and rivals cut profit margins of their television businesses, GF Securities analyst Zhou Jin told Bloomberg. Last year, Changhong agreed a number of deals to broaden its product mix. In June, it sold a 0.8 per cent stake to Microsoft Corp, the world's biggest software maker, to strengthen ties for the joint development of internet-enabled television. In August, it bought 82.9 million shares or a 20 per cent stake in air-conditioner and refrigerator maker Hefei Meiling for 175.6 million yuan. Last month, it said it bought a 29.92 per cent stake in Shenzhen-listed Huayi Compressor, which makes compressors for air conditioners and refrigerators, for 234 million yuan. Changhong's profit jumped 50 per cent in the first half last year to 192.7 million yuan. Sales rose 30 per cent to 10.6 billion yuan on growth in flat-panel televisions. Shares in Sichuan Changhong rose 1.5 per cent to 9.42 yuan yesterday while Little Swan's shares have been suspended from trading since last Friday.