Wed, Feb 07, 2007 - Page 12 News List

TSMC's board gives approval for bigger dividend payout

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Taiwan Semiconductor Manufac-turing Co (TSMC, 台積電), the world's largest supplier of made-to-order chips, proposed increasing its cash dividend payout by 20 percent after earnings surged on demand for computers and consumer electronics.

The Hsinchu-based company said in a statement yesterday that its board approved a proposed cash dividend of NT$3 a share for last year, its largest, and a stock dividend of 5 shares for every 1,000 held, its smallest.

To facilitate the stock dividend issuance, the board approved the issue of about 586.43 million new shares at NT$10 per share from last year's earnings and additional paid-in capital to shareholders and employees, it said.

Shareholders will vote on the plan on May 7.

TSMC, which makes chips for use by companies such as Motorola Inc and Texas Instruments Inc, commands half of the market for custom-made semiconductors. Its profit last year surged an annual 36 percent to NT$127 billion (US$3.86 billion).

The NT$3 cash dividend is equal to 61 percent of last year's NT$4.92 per-share profit. TSMC paid a cash dividend of NT$2.49 per share last year, 69 percent of its 2005 earnings per share.

The board also approved a US$1.37 billion capital spending plan, it said in a statement. The company said last month it planned to increase capital spending about 10 percent this year to as much as US$2.8 billion.

The plan approved yesterday includes spending US$833.8 million on its 12-inch wafer fabs that use 90-nanometer and 65 nano-meter process technologies and eight-inch wafer fabs deploying 180 nanometer and 150 nano-meter processes.

The statement said US$265 million was set aside for building the fourth phase of a 12-inch wafer plant, and another US$269.2 million for R&D.

Last month TSMC reported its first decline in profit in five quarters, with net income falling 18 percent to NT$27.91 billion.

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