Flat-panel maker Chunghwa Picture Tubes Ltd (中華映管) aims to swing back to profit next month at the earliest, following losses over the past four years, chairman Lin Wei-shan (林蔚山) said yesterday.
Last year, Chunghwa Picture lost NT$11.77 billion (US$390.8 million) because of panel oversupply and weak prices. As of the first quarter of this year, its accumulated losses totaled NT$93.83 billion.
Lin said the firm’s operations improved this month and he anticipated its bottom line to return to the black next month or in August.
Chunghwa Picture saw its gross margin return to 2.4 percent in the January-to-March quarter after languishing in negative territory over the past four years.
The company expects its growth momentum to continue in the second half of the year, bolstered by robust demand for mobile devices, especially from China, Lin told reporters after the company’s annual general meeting.
The company would target flat panels and touch panels used in smartphones, tablets and automobiles in its ongoing efforts to shift its focus to making small and medium-sized slim screens from larger screens for PCs and TVs, Lin said.
Company president Lin Sheng-chang (林盛昌) also expects supply for mobile devices to continue to be tight. He expects the firm to ship a total of 420 million flat panels this year. In the first five months of the year, Chunghwa Picture shipped 200 million units of small and medium-sized flat panels.
The company said it would start mass production of on-cell touch panels next month, a majority of which would be 5-inch screens for smartphones for its Chinese customers, it said.