TSMC November sales hit 2nd-highest level

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC, ???), the world's largest contract chip maker, said that its sales for November hit the second-largest level in the company's history, with market analysts attributing the strong data to solid global smartphone demand.

In a statement, TSMC said that it posted NT$93.03 billion (US$2.92 billion) in consolidated sales in November, up 2.1 percent from a month earlier, to rank second-highest, behind only NT$94.31 billion recorded in August.

On the back of strong global demand for smartphones, in particular high-end models, TSMC's November sales rose 46.7 percent from a year earlier, the company data shows.

In addition to the solid high-end smartphone sales, analysts said, TSMC has also benefited from an increase in orders placed by Chinese smartphone vendors during the month, which pushed its sales higher.

The latest sales report reflected TSMC's earlier expectations that the company would feel only limited impact from the slow-season effects in the fourth quarter of the year.

During the October-November period, TSMC's consolidated sales totaled NT$184.12 billion. Based on the accumulated revenue data, analysts said it is likely that the chip maker will achieve its guidance target for the fourth quarter, as the smartphone market is still growing.

In mid-October, TSMC said that sales for the October-December period will range between NT$255 billion and NT$258 billion, down only 0.9 percent-2 percent from the third quarter, beating an earlier market estimate of a 5-10 percent fall.

In the first 11 months of this year, TSMC's consolidated sales rose 10.8 percent from a year earlier to NT$869.83 billion.

TSMC had expected that its sales for the whole of 2016 will rise 11-12 percent from a year earlier in Taiwan dollar terms, driven by smartphone demand.

Earlier this week, Minister of Science and Technology Yang Hung-duen (???) said that TSMC is planning to invest NT$500 billion in developing advanced 3 nanometer to 5 nanometer processes.

Yang said that TSMC is studying the feasibility of building a plant in the Southern Taiwan Science Park to this end.

He said that construction of the new plant is scheduled to start in 2020 and commercial production in the production site is expected to kick off in 2022.

The official said that the Kaohsiung plant is expected to generate about NT$200 billion in sales per year, with a workforce of about 10,000.

The government, Yang said, will provide the necessary assistance to TSMC for the investment project.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel