Tue, Jan 05, 2010 - Page 12 News List

Technology migration checks Nanya sales

By Lisa Wang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Nanya Technology Corp (南亞科技), the nation’s top computer memory chipmaker, yesterday posted 18 percent lower sales for last month, saying an ongoing technology migration program curbed growth of shipments.

Last month’s sales fell 18 percent month-on-month to NT$4.96 billion (US$155 million) from NT$6.05 billion. That was 250 percent higher than the NT$1.43 billion of sales in the same period of 2008, as demand bounced back from a long-term slump, helped by rising demand from PC makers to cope with increased sales after Microsoft Corp launched its new Windows 7 operating system as well as an improving global economy.

The Taoyuan-based company said the decrease was “mainly because of a technology conversion,” a company statement released yesterday said.

Shipments fell 12 percent last month from November, the chipmaker said.

Nanya Technology is one of the few computer memory chipmakers that can afford to upgrade its manufacturing equipment to 50-nanometer technology, the most advanced available.

That also allows Nanya Technology to make new-generation computer memory chips, or DDR3 chips, at a lower cost. The company expects to complete the technological migration at its 12-inch plant in the second quarter.

Meanwhile, Powerchip Semiconductor Corp (力晶半導體) yesterday said it returned to profit last quarter, snapping 10 consecutive quarters of losses.

The nation’s second-largest computer memory chipmaker did not disclose detailed financial figures.

Company spokesman Eric Tang (譚仲民) said “downstream channel demand has improved and commodity DRAM pricing has remained stable, resulting in monthly sales growth over the last few months.”

Tang said improved yields for its 65-nanometer technology, smooth shipments and stable prices had contributed to the company’s turnaround.

Powerchip said last month’s sales rose 2.5 percent to NT$5.52 billion from NT$5.38 billion in November, marking the highest level since July 2008.

In related news, Inotera Memories Inc (華亞科技) yesterday said its sales rose 8 percent month-on-month to NT$4.67 billion last month, hitting a level last seen in January 2007.

Inotera is a computer memory chip venture between Nanya Technology and US memory company Micron Technology Inc.

Nanya Technology shares plunged 3.06 percent to NT$31.7 yesterday, ending a seven-trading-day winning streak. Inotera shares fell 2.41 percent to NT$26.3, while Powerchip shares bucked the trend to close 0.5 percent higher at NT$4.02.

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