Mon, Nov 29, 2004 - Page 10 News List

Innolux Display plans rights issue

FUND RAISER Tuan Hsing-chien said the company hopes to raise between NT$5 billion and NT$6 billion


Innolux Display Corp (群創光電), a flat-screen start-up company, plans to raise up to NT$6 billion by offering rights to existing shareholders next quarter to boost capacity, a company official said.

Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密) currently owns a 6 percent stake in Innolux, but plans to increase its holdings to around 30 percent, if approved by the company's shareholders.

The rights-issue plan came as local rivals scramble for fresh capital before the thin film transitory (TFT) liquid crystal display (LCD) industry falls deeper into stagnation because of overcapacity.

The capital crunch is apparently not a great concern for Innolux president and founder Tuan Hsing-chien (段行建).

"We'll have sufficient capital for new facilities for 2005 after the rights issue, plus a the NT$20 billion bank loan obtained in March," Tuan said on Saturday during an annual employee gathering, according to a Chinese-language newspaper.

Innolux officials could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Tuan did not reveal how many common shares Innolux plans to offer, or the share price.

He only said they hope to raise between NT$5 billion and NT$6 billion.

In the previous rights issue in September, the year-old Innolux sold its shares at NT$12 a share.

Chunghwa Picture Tubes Ltd (中華映管), the nation's No. 3 maker of LCD screens, secured a US$150 million syndicate loan on Nov. 19 and US$213 million in corporate bonds last Friday with 54-percent premium, that it plans to use to expand capacity.

Quanta Display Corp (廣輝電子), a joint venture between Quanta Computer Inc (廣達電腦) and Sharp Corp of Japan, raised US$280 million by issuing overseas convertible bonds to expand its next-generation factory.

Innolux, a supplier of flat panels for computers and smaller-sized screens for consumer electronics, is scheduled to offer its shares on the Taiwan Stock Exchange in 2006, Tuan has said previously.

Innolux is ramping up its fifth-generation plant and plans to churn out 10,000 units of substrate glass a month in the three-month period to next March, Tuan said. Monthly output would gradually increase to 35,000 units and then to 65,000, he said.

Currently, Innolux has a 4.5G plant ramped up and plans to begin mass production early next year. Half of Innolux's output would supply Hon Hai's need, the company said.

Innolux will spend US$693 million to boost its output this year, the world's fourth-largest investment in the industry during the period, Texas-based researcher DisplaySearch said earlier this year.

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