Friday, October 27, 2017
Macronix International Co (ÍúºêëŠ×Ó) yesterday posted its strongest quarterly profit in seven years for last quarter, as prices climbed on strong demand for high-density memory chips and supply constraints.
Hsinchu-based Marconix, which supplies read-only memory (ROM) chips to Japan¡¯s Nintendo Co, expects the supply constraints to extend into this quarter and through next year as there is no significant capacity expansion in sight except among Chinese manufacturers focused on the low-density memory chip market.
¡°We are positive about next year. Supply will continue to be tight for the whole of 2018,¡± Marconix chairman Miin Wu (…ÇÃôÇó) told a media briefing in Taipei. ¡°Our 12-inch fab and 8-inch fab will continue to be fully utilized.¡±
Customers demand continues to surpass what it can supply and it is ¡°very selective¡± about orders, the company said.
That will help it improve its client portfolios and product lineups, which is part of a long-term business strategy to maintain stable profits, the company said.
Net profits soared to NT$2.12 billion (US$70.13 million) for the quarter ending on Sept. 30, compared with NT$633 million during the same period last year.
The figure represented a 2.45-fold growth from NT$616 million in the second quarter.
Gross margin climbed to 38.4 percent last quarter, compared with 33.8 percent in the second quarter and 30.7 percent in the same period last year.
Macronix booked NT$9.39 billion in inventories last quarter as it built up its stock in advance for a major client so it could handle the expected high demand during holiday shopping season this quarter.
That is one of indicators that strong growth momentum is to carry into the current quarter, the company said.
¡°Our capacities have been fully booked for the fourth quarter. We cannot satisfy customer demand,¡± Wu said. ¡°Supply crunch is especially evidenced in high-density NOR flash memory chips and single-layer-cell NAND flash chips.¡±
There is the likelihood that revenue this quarter will be higher than last quarter, though revenue usually peaks in the third quarter, Wu said.
Macronix earned NT$10.47 billion in revenue last quarter, with NOR flash memory chips the biggest contributor at 48 percent, while ROM memory chips saw the strongest growth of 2.9 times on a quarterly basis as Nintendo is offering two platforms, Switch and 3D.
Robust demand and an uptick in chip prices will also help boost gross margin and operating margin this quarter, the company said.
Operating profit margin soared to 20 percent last quarter, from 9 percent in the second quarter and 10 percent a year ago.
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