Wed, Aug 09, 2006 - Page 12 News List

TSMC's board approves funds for factory expansion

STAFF WRITER , WITH AP

The board of management of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufac-turing Co (TSMC, 台積電) yesterday approved US$190.1 million in capital expenditures for factory expansion, the company said in a statement.

The funds are expected to be used to upgrade the chipmaker's six-inch and eight-inch wafer capacities in Hsinchu, the statement said.

TSMC, the world's biggest supplier of made-to-order chips, also said its board approved an increase of investment not exceeding US$27 million in VisEra Technologies Inc (采鈺科技) to participate in a secondary offer by VisEra in proportion with TSMC's current stake in the company.

VisEra was created in 2003 as a spin-off from TSMC with investment from image sensor partners. The image sensor foundry provider is currently chaired by Chiang Shang-yi (蔣尚義), a former senior vice president of research and development at TSMC between 2000 and this year.

Meanwhile, TSMC's board approved ex-post purchase of 989,000 shares of Global Unichip Corp (創意電子), a system-on-chip design foundry and close partner of TSMC, made during participation in an over-allotment sale where TSMC helped stabilize the stock price of Global Unichip, the statement said.

Separately, rival United Microelectronics Corp (UMC) said yesterday that its revenue for last month rose by 30 percent from the same month last year. Revenue totaled NT$9.2 billion (US$280.4 million) last month, compared to NT$7.07 billion in July last year, the company said in a statement, without elaborating.

UMC reported revenue of NT$59.34 billion for the January-July period, up 27 percent from NT$46.79 billion in the same period last year.

Kenneth Lee, an analyst at Primasia Securities, said last month's sales figure were in line with the company's predictions.

Last week, UMC said its net profit for the April-June period was NT$6.05 billion, up from NT$299 million in the second quarter of last year.

The company's second-quarter revenue rose 32 percent to NT$25.75 billion from NT$19.44 billion in the year-earlier period.

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