Sector showing growth
The local manufacturing sector continued to show signs of improvement in August as Taiwan’s exports rebounded, the Taiwan Institute of Economic Research said yesterday. The institute said the manufacturing composite index for August rose 1.32 points from a month earlier to 11.84, flashing “yellow-blue” — which indicates that the sector is in a transition period between recession and growth — for the second consecutive month. Prior to July, the index saw 15 months of “blue” lights, indicating sector decline. Among the five sub-indices in the composite index, four showed signs of improvement, the institute said.
CSC name acting chairman
Vice Minister of Economic Affairs Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) has been named acting chairman of China Steel Corp (CSC, 中鋼) after Andrew Sung (宋志育) yesterday retired from the post. The Ministry of Economic Affairs is still discussing possible candidates with the Executive Yuan to lead the nation’s largest steel mill, local media reported. The company’s aggregate pre-tax profit for the first eight months of the year grew 24.48 percent from the same period of last year to NT$13.91 billion (US$443.5 million), the company reported earlier this week.
Tatung shares plunge
Shares of Tatung Co (大同), a home-appliances manufacturer, tanked yesterday, after the Taiwan High Court ordered chairman Lin Wei-shan (林蔚山) to pay NT$2.29 billion to investors for embezzling Tatung funds to pay a NT$2 billion loan from Nature Worldwide Technology Corp (通達), a friend’s company in which Lin had invested. Lin’s actions contributed to losses of up to NT$1.7 billion for Tatung between 2007 and 2010, and triggered the Securities and Futures Investors Protection Center to file a class-action lawsuit against Lin. Tatung shares plummeted 8.27 percent to NT$7.76 on the Taiwan Stock Exchange. Lin can still appeal the case.
Apple Pay applications open
The Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) has started accepting applications from local banks to provide Apple Pay mobile services, DigiTimes reported on its Web site yesterday. The report said the commission would only allow credit card payments initially, while other methods, such as debit cards, might be allowed later. CTBC Bank (中國信託銀行), Cathay United Commercial Bank (國泰世華銀行), E.Sun Commercial Bank (玉山銀行) and Taishin International Bank (台新銀行) are among the banks who might start offering Apple Pay when it becomes available, the report said.
Sharp to invest in LED
Sharp Corp is investing ￥57.4 billion (US$567 million) to develop organic LED display production facilities, with the aim of starting output by June 2018. The funds are to be used for equipment and to deliver sample products to customers, the Osaka, Japan-based company said in a statement yesterday. Sharp is investing in its factories in Mie and Osaka. The investment is part of the company’s ￥200 billion commitment to OLED technology, part of a strategic plan it adopted with its new owner, Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密). The proposed investment will be for smartphone displays, according to Sharp, which is among suppliers that provide screens for Apple Inc’s products.
STATE SUBSIDIES: The talks over a factory in Dresden have a top end on par with what Japan is offering TSMC and outdo a cap other firms are being offered in Europe Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電), the world’s biggest contract chipmaker, is in talks to receive German government subsidies for as much as 50 percent of the costs to build a new semiconductor fab in the country, people familiar with the matter said. The government is in ongoing negotiations with TSMC, as well as its partners on the project — Bosch Ltd, NXP Semiconductors NV and Infineon Technologies AG — the people said, asking not to be identified because the deliberations are private. No final decisions have been made and the final subsidy amount could still change. Any state aid must also
South Korea would avoid capitalizing on China’s ban on a US chipmaker, seeing the move by Beijing as an attempt to drive a wedge between Seoul and Washington, a person familiar with the situation said. The South Korean government would not encourage its memorychip firms to grab market share in China lost by Micron Technology Inc, which has been barred for use in critical industries by Beijing on national security grounds, the person said. China is the biggest market for South Korea semiconductor firms Samsung Electronics Co and SK Hynix Inc and home to some of their factories. Their operations in China
GEOPOLITICAL RISKS: The company has a deep collaboration with TSMC, but it is also open to working with Samsung Electronics Co and Intel Corp, Nvidia’s CEO said Nvidia Corp, the world’s biggest artificial intelligence (AI) GPU supplier, yesterday said that it is diversifying its supply chain partners in order to enhance supply chain resilience amid geopolitical tensions. “All of our supply chain is designed for maximum diversity and redundancy so that we can have resilience. Our company is very big and so we have a lot of customers depending on us. And so our supply chain resilience is very important to us. We manufacture in as many places as we can,” Nvidia founder and chief executive officer Jensen Huang (黃仁勳) said in response to a reporter’s question in
BIG MARKET: As growth in the number of devices and data traffic accelerates, it will not be possible to send everything to the cloud, a Qualcomm executive said Qualcomm Inc is betting the future of artificial intelligence (AI) will require more computing power than what the cloud alone can provide. The world’s largest maker of smartphone processors is transitioning from a communications company into an “intelligent edge computing” firm, Qualcomm senior vice president Alex Katouzian said. The edge in question is the mobile device that a user taps to access a network or service, and Katouzian used his time headlining one of the major keynote events at the Computex show in Taipei to make the case for how big a market that would be. The US company’s chips help smartphones harness