Thu, Feb 21, 2013 - Page 14 News List

Inotera Memories posts reduced losses on Micron deal

By Lisa Wang  /  Staff reporter

DRAM chipmaker Inotera Memories Inc (華亞科技) yesterday said its losses improved to NT$1.19 billion (US$40.2 million) last month after it started selling most of its output to Micron Technology Inc at a price above market levels.

The monthly loss shrank “42.88 percent from a year ago,” the company said in a statement to the Taiwan Stock Exchange. Inotera lost about NT$2.1 billion in January last year.

The chipmaker said it expected to shrink its losses gradually this year, as it plans to increase shipments of better-priced DRAM chips used in servers and other electronics products to about 50 percent of its total revenue this year, compared with 40 percent last year.

US memory chipmaker Micron holds about 39 percent of Inotera, while local memorychip maker Nanya Technology Corp (南亞科技) owns about 25 percent. Based on agreements signed last month, Nanya Technology would only buy 5,000 wafers a month from Inotera, which has a monthly capacity of 60,000 12-inch wafers using 30-nanometer process technology.

That should help boost the average selling price for Inotera’s chips in the current quarter, after prices rose 7 percent sequentially last quarter, company chairman Charles Kau (高啟全) told reporters on Jan. 23.

In a separate filing to the Taiwan Stock Exchange, Inotera said its board had approved a plan to sell about 2.4 billion common shares through a private placement.

Formosa Plastics Group (台塑集團) would subscribe to most of the share offering to boost its stake in Inotera, Kau said previously.

Inotera could raise NT$14.45 billion based on the stock’s closing price of NT$6.02 yesterday, after the share price rose for five consecutive trading days. Inotera shares were boosted by growing demand for PC DRAM chips in China.

The average price of benchmark DDR3 2Gb/256M DRAM chips rose 1.2 percent yesterday to US$1.265 per unit, after hitting a 20-month high on Tuesday, according to pricing statistics compiled by Taipei-based market researcher TrendForce Corp (集邦科技).

Inotera said it plans to use the proceeds to improve its financial structure and replenish its working capital.

Inotera has budgeted NT$4.5 billion on capital spending this year, with extra spending pending approval for developing next-generation 20-nanometer technology. Last year, the company spent NT$4.3 billion.

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