Hynix Semiconductor Inc., the world's second-largest computer memory chipmaker, won creditor approval to build two plants in China, paving the way for the company to expand and keep up with rivals. \nLenders representing more than 75 percent of the South Korean chipmaker's debt approved plans for Hynix to jointly build the plants with Europe's STMicroelectronics NV, main creditor Korea Exchange Bank said in a statement that didn't specify the investment amount. Internet-based news provider Edaily earlier reported the plants would cost US$2 billion. \nHynix, which forecast its first annual profit since 1999 this year, needs new plants to drive down costs and compete in a market forecast to grow 49 percent to US$26 billion in 2004. The Icheon-based chipmaker has fallen behind rivals such as Micron Technology Inc. in building the most advanced plants that make chips out of 12-inch wafers. \n"It's a must for Hynix to hasten investments, especially for the 12-inch plant, because it can't stay competitive by standing still," said Koh Jun, a chip analyst at Daewoo Securities Co. in Seoul. "It's good for Hynix that creditors finally approved this." \nIndustry leader Samsung Electronics Co. of Suwon, Korea, and Boise, Idaho-based Micron Technology Inc., which lost its rank as the second-largest producer during the second quarter to Hynix, have 12-inch manufacturing facilities. \nCreditors own more than 80 percent of Hynix after bailing out the company in 2002. Hynix and STMicroelectronics will each spend US$500 million on the plants and borrow a combined US$1 billion from China, Edaily said yesterday. \nTo fund the plant, Hynix has agreed to sell its non-memory chip business to a Citigroup Inc. unit for 954 billion won in cash and assumed debt. \n"We welcome the decision," Hynix spokesman Bang Min Ho said. "This helps Hynix and its strategic plans." \nHynix has also said it needs to boost overseas production because it would help the company, subject to punitive trade tariffs from the US and Europe and possible extra duties from Japan, dodge extra taxes. Building plants in China also helps better position the company in the world's fastest-growing major economy, Daewoo's Koh said. \n"China's own demand is expected to be explosive so if you're going to build a plant overseas, China makes the best sense," Koh said.
Gogoro Inc (睿能創意) yesterday launched its first electric bicycle, the Gogoro Eeyo 1, in Taiwan, after unveiling the bike in New York in late May and in France on Tuesday. The company said it would also introduce the series in other European countries such as Germany and the Netherlands. The “Eeyo project” is the fourth of Gogoro’s eight projects that concentrate on smart transportation, which includes Gogoro’s electric scooter, battery swap system and electric scooter sharing service, company founder and chief executive officer Horace Luke (陸學森) told a media briefing in Taipei. “There are various types of city commuters. We will not
EXPERIMENTAL DRUG: While news about a COVID-19 vaccine is more eye-catching, developing a treatment would be more viable, the Senhwa boss said Senhwa Biosciences Inc (生華科) aims to raise NT$1.5 billion (US$50.57 million) by issuing 15 million new common shares in the third quarter of this year to fund the research of new drugs, including the experimental drug Silmitasertib for the treatment of COVID-19, the company said on Monday. That would be the firm’s largest fundraising effort after it raised more than NT$1.4 billion from an initial public offering on the Taipei Exchange (TPEX) in April 2017, chief financial officer Sarah Chang (張小萍) told the Taipei Times by telephone. The price of the new shares would depend on the firm’s average share price
NOT A PANACEA: Offering 5G services would not solve the problem of declining telecom incomes, chairman Sheih Chi-mau said, expecting a flat 5G telecom revenue Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信) yesterday became the nation’s first telecom to debut its 5G services, offering tiered tariffs that include a threshold of NT$599 and flat rates, as it aims to switch half of its subscribers to the 5G network within three years. Subscribers would have unlimited data transmission for monthly fees starting at NT$1,399 — the same flat rate as when the company launched its 4G service in 2014 — and they can subscribe to the highest-rate plan for NT$2,699 per month for faster data transmission speeds and larger bandwidth, the company said. Data transmission speeds would be within the range
STAYING AHEAD: TSMC expects its sales this year to grow 14 to 19 percent and could spend up to US$3.52 billion on research and development, leaving its rivals far behind Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) reported that the US last year approved 99 percent of its patent applications, which placed the tech giant among the top patent holders in the US. In its Corporate Social Responsibility Report, TSMC said it last year secured about 3,600 patents worldwide, including more than 2,300 in the US. As of the end of last year, TSMC owned more than 39,000 patents, the report said. The company last year filed almost 6,500 patent applications worldwide and ranked among the top 10 patent applicants in the US. In Taiwan, it was the largest patent applicant for the fourth