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Motherboard revenues to increase over 10%

Large PC motherboard makers are expected to grow by 10 percent in terms of revenues, local industry observers said yesterday.

Motherboard manufacturers in line for the growth spurt include the top four — Asustek Computer Inc., Giga-byte Technology Co., Ltd., Elitegroup Computer Systems Co. Ltd., and Micro-Star International Co., Ltd.

With large OEM orders, sales at Asustek this year are expected to reach more than NT$100 billion. The company’s total sales last year were NT$83.8 billion. Asustek has long been an OEM manufacturer whose products were mostly outsourced by brand names customers.

Asustek is aiming for 20 percent growth this year with production expected to top 20 million units.

Elitegroup’s sales this year are estimated to top between NT$60 billion and NT$70 billion as a result of acquisition of another PC motherboard maker. Last year the company’s sales were NT$31.4 billion.

Production of Elitegroup this year is also estimated at 20 million units.

Production of Micro-Star and Giga-byte Technology will reach 13 million and 11 million units, respectively.

Micro-Star, the third largest PC motherboard maker, is expected to grow 15 percent this year to NT$46 billion in sales, with an earnings per share estimated at NT$11.

Giga-byte Technology this year is estimated to grow 10 percent to reach NT$32 billion. The graphic display adaptor will be the product line with the most-produced item this year at Giga-byte Technology.

Although the Market Information Center (MIC) forecast Taiwan’s PC motherboard to grow by 6 percent, industry sources estimated that the world demand for PC motherboards would grow only 3 percent.

Masterlink Securities Investment Advisory Group indicated that the average PC motherboard would be around US$63 this year. The securities investment company pointed out prices of PC motherboards had been plummeting at 7 percent annually since 1999. The introduction of Intel 850 chipset, Rambus memory, 845 chipsets and SDRAM (synchronous dynamic RAM) and DDR (double data rate) RAM (random access memory) last year slowed down the slide.

In 1999 production of the top four Taiwan’s PC motherboard makers took 44 percent of the domestic market. Their market share rose to 48 percent in 2000, 65 percent last year, and is expected to expand to 74 percent.

The top four makers turned out 51.3 million pieces of PC motherboards last year, and are expected to make 60.8 million pieces this year, according to Masterlink.

Smaller PC motherboard makers such as Abit Computer Corp., Shuttle Inc., Biostar Microtech International Corp. suffered declining revenues from 1 to 15 percent last year.

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