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Taiwan's major foundries reveal continued sales declines

Posted: 11 Apr 2005 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:fab? wafer?

Taiwan's top two foundries reported further sales declines for the first quarter, in line with a slowdown that's settled across the industry this year.

Taiwan Semiconductor Mfg Co. Ltd said sales dipped to $1.76 billion in the first quarter from $1.9 billion in the fourth quarter. It's the second quarterly decline for TSMC.

The company said its fabs ran at 78 percent of capacity, and selling prices remained flat. Wafer shipments declined by a single-digit percentage point sequentially. That contrasts with capacity utilization of 88 percent

in the fourth quarter of 2004, and 103 percent the quarter before.

TSMC noted a slight pickup at the end of the quarter, but not enough to match last year's sales. "Due to higher wafer shipments, net sales for March 2005increased by 2.4 percent compared to February 2005. On a year-over-year

basis, net sales for March 2005 decreased 11.8 percent," said Lora Ho, TSMC vice president and chief financial officer.

At United Microelectronics Corp., the industry's second largest foundry, the story was a little worse, but not unexpected. Sales declined 27 percent from the fourth quarter, to $643 million. That's also the second quarterly decline for UMC, which saw sales drop 18 percent in the fourth quarter as utilization slowed to 72 percent. UMC is expecting a 60 percent utilization rate this quarter.

Year on year, sales at UMC were down about 20 percent, but March sales popped up by 14 percent compared to February.

Neither company provided an outlook for the second quarter.

- Mike Clendenin

EE Times

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