Thu, Aug 09, 2018 - Page 12 News List

GlobalWafers Q2 net profit highest ever in its history

MARKET DISPARITY:Demand for ICs has been rising, but silicon wafer makers are cautious about increasing their capacity, leading to a supply crunch

By Chen Cheng-hui  /  Staff reporter

GlobalWafers Co (環球晶圓), the world’s third-largest silicon wafer maker, on Tuesday reported that second-quarter net profit attributable to its parent company rose 170.61 percent annually to NT$3.49 billion (US$114 million), the highest in its history.

Operating profit over the same period grew 141.94 percent year-on-year to NT$4.13 billion and earnings per share (EPS) expanded from NT$3.09 to NT$8, the Hsinchu-based company said in a filing with the Taiwan Stock Exchange.

The company’s promising bottom-line figures followed last month’s report that second-quarter consolidated revenue hit a record NT$14.37 billion, thanks to wafer supply constraints and price increases.

GlobalWafers, a subsidiary of solar wafer maker Sino-American Silicon Products Inc (SAS, 中美矽晶), has benefited from silicon wafer supply-demand dynamics.

Demand for memory, optoelectronic and special logic integrated circuits (ICs) has continued to rise on the back of new applications in data centers, robotics, automotive devices, smartphones, power management systems and Internet of Things, but silicon wafer makers have been cautious about capacity expansions, analysts have said.

“As such, we expect silicon wafer supply to remain tight in the next one to two years,” Yuanta Securities Investment Consulting Co (元大投顧) said in a note. “GlobalWafers’ order transparency has now been extended into the second half of 2020.”

GlobalWafers reported net profit of NT$6.28 billion for the first half of this year, up 282.4 percent year-on-year, with EPS rising from NT$4.17 to NT$14.36 over the period.

In other developments, GlobalWafers’ US subsidiary, GlobiTech Inc, is to spend US$59.2 million on a natural gas power plant and a clean room extension project in Texas.

GlobiTech’s board of directors on Monday approved the plan that aims to provide a stable power supply, improve niche product technology and the flexibility of capacity expansion, GlobalWafers said in a separate filing.

GlobiTech, a supplier of silicon epitaxy products and services, is based in Sherman, Texas. The firm was in 2008 acquired by SAS and later became a wholly owned unit of GlobalWafers.

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