TSMC eyes 50% global market share

GLOBAL LEADER::Credit Suisse said the company is the leader in 28nm and 20nm technologies, which could boost its market share to 60 percent in the next few years

By Lisa Wang  /  Staff reporter

Wed, Mar 26, 2014 - Page 13

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電), the world’s biggest contract chipmaker, is expected to expand its global market share to more than 50 percent this year and to 60 percent in the next few years, benefiting primarily from its leadership position in advanced technologies, Credit Suisse AG said yesterday.

That would represent a big jump from the company’s 35 percent to 36 percent market share in 2000, according to a report released yesterday by Credit Suisse’s Taipei securities branch.

TSMC has a higher share in the two leading nodes — 28-nanometer and 20-nanometer technologies — than its overall market share, the brokerage said.

TSMC chairman Morris Chang (張忠謀) told investors in October last year that the chipmaker has an about 80 percent share in the 28nm market.

TSMC’s revenue has grown by a composite average rate of 17 percent over the past 10 years, outpacing the 16 percent increase for fabless companies and the 5 percent rise for the overall semiconductor industry, Credit Suisse analyst Randy Abrams said in the report.

At the brokerage’s annual Asian Investment Conference held in Hong Kong yesterday, TSMC management said the firm would improve its gross margin this year on better market share and accelerated cost-reduction programs.

That is “more optimistic than the [company’s] prior goal of keeping it [gross margin] flat,” Abrams said.

Last year, TSMC’s gross margin slid to 47.1 percent from 48.2 percent in 2012.

The company said two weeks ago that it was expecting its gross margin to rise to 47 percent in the current quarter from 44.5 percent last quarter.

That compared with the firm’s original guidance of between 44.5 percent and 46.5 percent.

Revenue is expected to grow 0.82 percent to NT$147 billion (US$4.8 billion) this quarter from NT$145.81 billion last quarter, thanks primarily to rising demand for 28nm chips and inventory restocking demand.

Credit Suisse retained its “outperform” rating on TSMC with a target price at NT$130, improving about 14.54 percent from the stock’s closing price of NT$113.5 yesterday.