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Toshiba gained NAND share in 1Q

Posted: 19 May 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Dylan McGrath? Toshiba? iSuppli?

Toshiba Corp. tightened its grip on the No. 2 spot in NAND flash memory during Q1, increasing its market share by 5.4 percent, according to market research firm iSuppli Corp. The company was the only company among the NAND flash suppliers to achieve a sequential increase in revenue.

According to iSuppli, some of Toshiba's gain came at the expense of market leader Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd, which lost more than 2 percentage points of market share. However, Samsung still held 48.7 percent of the market, with Toshiba a distant second at 24.6 percent. Samsung also posted $1.58 billion in NAND flash revenue, compared to $801 million for Toshiba.

Hynix Semiconductor, the No. 3 player in the market, also lost market share, said iSuppli. Hynix posted NAND flash revenue of $481 million while its market share slipped from 16.9 percent to 14.8 percent. Renesas Technology, which held down the No. 4 ranking with $183.5 million in revenue, saw its market share slip nearly a percentage point from 6.4 percent to 5.6. Rounding out the Q1 NAND flash rankings were Micron Technology (2.9 percent market share), STMicroelectronics (2.5 percent) and Infineon Technologies (0.8 percent), according to iSuppli.

iSuppli said the major reason the NAND flash market managed to limit contraction is that the NAND average selling price (ASP) declined by only 22.5 percent compared to Q4, well below iSuppli's forecast of a 28 percent drop. This was largely offset by a 19 percent growth in unit shipments in the quarter.

"The limited decrease in ASPs and the strong rise in unit shipments show that the NAND flash market was not as bad as many had expected in the first quarter," said Nam Hyung Kim, director and principal analyst with iSuppli, in a statement. "Weak pricing in the spot memory market did not impact the overall ASP to a great degree. A shipment backlog from the fourth quarter and continued strong demand for embedded flash helped promote overall price stability, and helped compensate for weak demand from the MP3 player and removable memory-card markets."

While Q1 NAND revenue was down 8, sales still were 60 percent higher than Q1 of 2005, the firm said. This makes NAND the fastest-growing product segment in the global semiconductor market in the first quarter on a year-over-year basis.

- Dylan McGrath
EE Times

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