AUO sales drop 15.3%
AU Optronics Corp (AUO, 友達光電) yesterday reported that sales last month declined 15.3 percent from January and 27.5 percent annually to NT$20.57 billion (US$622.2 million), due to fewer working days because of the long Lunar New Year holiday. Shipments of desktop and notebook computer display panels declined 9.5 percent sequentially to 7.07 million units, but shipments of small to medium-sized panels grew 2.4 percent sequentially to 11.64 million units. The company said it would continue to focus on quality of sales over quantity. Growth this year will be driven by further differentiation of its product mix, such as display panels for medical, Internet of Things, virtual reality and wearable applications, it said.
E Ink, Dai Nippon partner
E Ink Holdings Inc (元太科技) yesterday announced a partnership with Japan’s Dai Nippon Printing Co Ltd to develop products based on the Taiwanese firm’s low energy consumption electric paper technology. The companies announced that they were collaborating on two upcoming products: an animated billboard with multi-color content using E Ink Prism technology and smart cards with near-field communication capabilities that can display content using E Ink Mobius technology for credit and debit cards and retailers’ loyalty cards.
Tai Tong sales rise 16%
Restaurant operator Tai Tong Food & Beverage Group (TTFB, 瓦城泰統集團) yesterday said that sales last month had risen 16.08 percent annually to NT$406.62 million to reach a record high. The company attributed the strong growth to the high season for year-end and Lunar New Year banquets. Aggregate sales in the first two months of this year rose 20 percent annually to a unprecedented NT$721 million, it said. TTFB shares yesterday gained 0.43 percent to reach NT$235 in Taipei trading.
Fubon opens in Shenzhen
Fubon Financial Holding Co (富邦金控) the nation’s most profitable financial services provider, yesterday said that its Chinese banking subsidiary, Fubon Bank (China) Co Ltd (富邦華一銀行), has opened a new branch in the Qianhai pilot free-trade zone in Shenzhen, China. Fubon Financial is the only Taiwanese company to have banking branches in all of China’s free-trade zones, including Tienjin, Kunshan and Shanghai. With three recently approved applications, Fubon Financial is poised to raise its presence in China to 22 locations before the end of this year, the company said in statement.
FSC fines Hua Nan
The Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) yesterday said that it had fined state-run Hua Nan Commercial Bank (華南銀行) NT$3 million for extending NT$520 million in unauthorized mortgages between November 2013 and February last year. The bad mortgages were the result of a lapse in the bank’s internal controls, the regulator said. It said that NT$270 million worth of the mortgages have been classified as nonperforming. Investigators found that the bank had approved 34 mortgages for a criminal ring that falsely reporting inflated home prices to gain excessively high loan-to-value ratios. Hua Nan said that 25 of the 34 loans had been processed by the same employee, who has since left the bank.
This story has been updated since first published to correct the timeline for the problematic mortgages written by Hua Nan Commercial Bank.
Manufacturers are on a mission to produce desperately needed medical ventilators for the COVID-19 pandemic, even if it means converting assembly lines now making auto parts. Along with a shortage of masks and gloves, the spread of COVID-19 to almost every corner of the globe has highlighted a great need for specialized machines that help keep severely afflicted patients alive. “As the global pandemic evolves, there is unprecedented demand for medical equipment, including ventilators,” GE Healthcare chief executive officer Kieran Murphy said. The group has hired more workers and is making ventilators around the clock. Swedish group Getinge AB is also ramping up output
Facing the rapidly evolving global COVID-19 pandemic, Citibank Taiwan Ltd (台灣花旗) has proactively taken precautionary measures. “The health and safety of our colleagues and their families, as well as our clients and the communities we serve, are of the utmost importance. We continue to take proactive measures to preserve their well-being while we maintain our ability to serve our clients,” Citibank Taiwan chairman Paulus Mok (莫兆鴻) said in a statement yesterday. “We have local and regional contingency plans in place, and we have well-established business continuity plans for the firm. We are monitoring the situation closely, adjusting our operations accordingly,
UPGRADE AND TRANSFORM: Although the cross-strait trade deal might remain, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said businesses should prepare for any disruptions Taiwan might face a decline in foreign trade with China if the cross-strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) ends this year, Minister of Economic Affairs Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) said yesterday. The agreement, which was signed and put into effect in 2010 to reduce trade barriers across the Taiwan Strait, is expected to end this year, despite not having an exact termination date. “We have not received notification [from China] that it wishes to terminate ECFA,” Shen told reporters prior to attending a meeting at the Legislative Yuan. “Even if we are notified, the agreement would only cease after six months.” While acknowledging the
GoShare, an electric scooter sharing service provider with Gogoro Inc (睿能創意), plans to expand to Tainan next quarter in a strategic alliance with Aeon Motor Co (宏佳騰). The company currently offers its services in Taipei and Taoyuan. “Tainan is very popular among tourists. The city receives an average of 22.94 million tourists every year,” GoShare head Henry Chiang (姜家煒) told a news conference yesterday in Taipei, citing Tourism Bureau statistics. “Besides, the city has a long history of riding scooters,” he said. Each household owns an average of 2.5 scooters, he added. “Expanding presence” is one of four strategies GoShare is adopting for this