| U.S., Japan Firms Raise OEM Orders to Taiwan Wafer Makers
March 9, 1998 (TAIPEI) -- Although Taiwan OEM wafer companies
experienced a slump in the first quarter of 1997, they began to
see a turnaround in the second quarter, buoyed by a rise in OEM
orders from the United States and Japan.
|Sales in the second half of the year were nearly 200 percent
higher than in the first. Industry sources said 1998 is likely to
see a similar situation, and that the buoyancy in the second half
of 1998 will even surpass that of the same period in 1997.
Over the past few years, U.S. companies have been gradually
reducing the proportion of wafers manufactured in-house and
contracting out more wafer production to OEM manufacturers.
More recently, Japanese and Korean companies have been following
in their steps, with the result that orders to local wafer makers
An executive from United Microelectronics Corp. said his company
has been in contact with several Japanese giants regarding
An executive from Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
said that with the exception of Hitachi Ltd., all Japanese firms
in the industry have begun contracting out their wafer
Toshiba Corp., for instance, has placed OEM orders with Taiwan's
Winbond Electronics Corp. and Charter Electronics Industrial
Pte., Ltd. of Singapore.
Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. subcontracted production
to Taiwan's Macronix International Co., Ltd., NEC Corp. to a
Chinese producer and Fujitsu Ltd. to TSMC.
The TSMC executive added that in 1997, his company posted
operating revenues and profits of NT$43.9 billion (US$1.36
billion) and NT$17.9 billion, respectively, translating into a
profit rate of 40.9 percent.
The profit rate for the fourth quarter alone was even higher,
He said he would not speculate on whether this year's performance
will be better than last year's, but added that the market for
OEM wafer manufacturing already shows signs of heating up.
(Commercial Times, Taiwan)
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