Advanced Semiconductor Engineering Inc (ASE, 日月光半導體), the world’s top chip packager, yesterday said it was on track to hit its target for this quarter and that it expected growth in the second half, supported by the launch of an array of new Ultrabooks and tablets.
ASE chief operating officer Tien Wu (吳田玉) said factories were almost fully utilized at the moment and the company’s performance would be even better in the second half, because strong growth momentum would offset the ups and downs of the global economy, the Chinese-language United Evening News reported.
The visibility for the next quarter was high, Wu said. He was optimistic about the fourth quarter, thanks to the sales of new Ultrabooks and Windows 8, Microsoft Corp’s upcoming operating system. Business would grow quarter-by-quarter in the second half, Wu said.
Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co are also slated to launch new smartphones in the second half, which would boost customers’ inventory buildup, Wu said.
On top of that, ASE said a new driver would come from Japan because chip companies there were quickening their pace in outsourcing chip testing and packaging services as they started reducing in-house manufacturing to reduce risk as a result of the March 11 quake and tsunami last year.
ASE said its target of increasing shipments this quarter by 15 percent quarter-on-quarter was reachable.
ASE’s optimism about the second half matched Siliconware Precision Industries Co’s (SPIL, 矽品) bullish outlook, on hopes replacement demand for new electronics will spur demand.
SPIL chairman Bough Lin (林文伯) told reporters on Tuesday that major customers were quite upbeat about the third quarter, despite uncertainty over the European debt crisis, the Chinese-language Economic Daily News reported on Wednesday. Some clients remained optimistic about the fourth quarter, he said.
SPIL will keep its annual capital spending high over the next three years in expectations that chip demand will increase quickly because of rapid growth from smartphones and tablets, Lin said. The company planned to spend a record high NT$17.5 billion (US$585 million) on new equipment this year.
Yesterday, ASE shareholders approved NT$0.65 per share in cash dividends and 14 percent in stock dividends based on the company’s net profits of NT$13.73 billion, or NT$2.08 per share.
Shareholders also gave the green light to sell NT$9 billion worth of corporate bonds overseas to finance ASE’s capacity expansion, replenish operational funds and repay bank loans. The bond issuance would be via private placement.
ASE and SPIL shares dropped 0.38 percent and 0.79 percent respectively to NT$26 and NT$31.25, performing better than the TAIEX’s loss of 0.76 percent yesterday.