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Toshiba to shutdown three fabs

Posted: 01 Dec 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:manufacturing? wafer fab? semiconductor facility?

Toshiba Corp. is planning to close three of its manufacturing facilities and consolidate much of its discrete, analog and imaging IC production into three others. The shutdown is due mainly to the decline in demand for consumer products in the western hemisphere. The company is also cutting down production at some of its semiconductor facilities, including one making ASICs and MCUs, from now until early January 2012.

Toshiba said the slowdown was notably in demand for PCs and TVs in Europe and the United States.

As a result, in the first half of its 2012 fiscal year Toshiba plans to close wafer fabs used for optical components in Kitakyushu and Hamaoka as well as an assembly plant used for power semiconductors at Mobara. The company added that regular employees at the affected facilities will, in principle, be redeployed within Toshiba Group.

Toshiba did not disclose how many permanent and contract staff would be affected by the closures.

The re-organization will concentrate manufacturing at three major facilities: Hijimeji Operations Semiconductor (Ibo-gun, Hyogo prefecture); Kaga Toshiba Electronics Corp. (Nomi, Ishikawa prefecture); and Buzen Toshiba Electronics Corporation (Buzen, Fukuoka prefecture).

After the re-organization Hijimeji Operations Semiconductor will be a development center for power semiconductors and small signal devices, Toshiba said.

Kaga Toshiba Electronics will be a main location for power semiconductor front-end process and will increase the 200-mm wafer manufacturing capacity of its 200-mm and expand production to include optical semiconductor manufacturing. Buzen Toshiba will become a development center for the assembly and packaging of optical semiconductors but with production limited to certain products while the rest is outsourced, Toshiba said.

The production slowdown will affect six facilities in all: Oita operations, which produces analog semiconductors and image sensors; Himeji Operations Semiconductor, which produces discrete semiconductors; and Kitakyushu Operations, which produces optical semiconductor devices; Iwate Toshiba Electronics, which produces ASICs and MCUs; and Kaga Toshiba Electronics and Hamaoka Toshiba electronics, which both produce discrete semiconductors.

Oita will have a 6-day shutdown around the end of the year as well as running at reduced levels. Himeji and Kitakyushu would both be put on a two-week shutdown, Toshiba said.

Toshiba said it would re-assess required production levels early in 2012.

- Peter Clarke
??EE Times





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