IC related firms may see stable Aug. growth
The China Post news staffThe China Post news staff--Taiwan's integrated circuit (IC) testing and packaging firms are expected to report stable growth in August compared to July, with sales from the communications sector set to be higher than those from the memory sector, experts said.
August 20, 2012, 12:22 am TWN
Advanced Semiconductor Engineering, Taiwan's IC testing and packaging giant, forecast steady shipments in August, a prediction echoed by rival Siliconware Precision Industries Ltd., which also noted sales would increase due to business from the communications and consumer electronics sectors.
Memory chip testing and packaging firm Powertech, however, offered a disparate view, saying inventory adjustment measures by clients have heaped pressures on operators. A decline in output for dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips may produce a stronger impact on testing and packaging firms in August than it did in July, the firm said.
KYEC, a semiconductor wafer and chip testing firm, is expected to see sales exceed the breakeven point in each of the three months in the third quarter, thanks to continued orders released by KYEC clients as well as Japanese and American optical sensor device manufacturers, the firm said.
IC wafer testing firm Ardentec has received stable orders from the micro-controller sector, while testing of logic semiconductor devices is almost running at full capacity. Memory chip testing volume is about the same in the third quarter as in the second, while testing of LCD-driver ICs is showing signs of a slowdown. Overall, order visibility for the firm is at about two months, with experts predicting the firm will post August sales of over NT$450 million.
Sigurd, another IC wafer and chip tester, reported stability from each of the company's product lines. The firm's investment in Meicer Semiconductor is expected to complete in September. Right now, the firm is running almost at full capacity, with monthly shipments of 50 million to 60 million. Meicer, meanwhile, has shipments of about 40 million. Together with Meicer, Sigurd may see shipments double from those before.
Chipbond, an LCD driver IC packaging firm, has not given an outlook as the firm is still observing situations in the LCD IC market.
The SDI Group said orders from independent device manufacturers have been stable since June, and rising inventories should not be a concern. Sales for August would be higher than July, the firm estimated.
YoungTek, which focuses on both semiconductors and LED, said August orders have been stable. It added July marked the peak for IC testing sales, which would not be surpassed in August. Business from the LED sector in August and September should be on par with that from July, it said.
MPI Corp., another company focusing on LED, said July was the trough for the third quarter, with sales in August and September expected to increase noticeably.
ThaiLin, another memory chip tester, said production in August would stay the same as July, with business from the mixed signal, logic IC and TV IC sectors expected to remain stable.
Overall, the market has been expecting a slow third quarter due to weak demand in Europe, the United States and China. However, the Industrial Economic and Knowledge Center (IEK) recently forecast IC packaging and testing operators are expected to see production value of NT$74 billion and NT$33 billion, respectively, in the third quarter, both a growth of 6.8 percent from the April-June period.
The upbeat sentiment is expected to last through the third quarter, on rising orders from Japanese independent device manufacturers as well as a decline in gold prices, the IEK said.