Upgrades will give Nanya capacity to manufacture 20nm chips

18 Mar

Nanya Technology Corp., the world’s No. 4 DRAM chipmaker, approved a spending plan that will deploy NT$40 billion (US$1.27 billion) over the next two to three years to upgrade manufacturing facilities.

The upgrades will give Nanya Technology the capacity to manufacture 20nm DRAM chips.

Currently, the only firms capable of manufacturing the 20nm chips are Samsung Electronics Co, SK Hynix Inc. and Micron Technology Inc.’s Inotera Memories Inc., which is a DRAM venture between Micron and Nanya.

Nanya will raise up to NT$20 billion to fund the technological upgrades. It plans to issue fresh shares to new strategic partners and arrange bank loans in the second half of this year, the Taipei Times reported.

The advanced technology “will be a lifesaver for Nanya Technology,” company president Charles Kau told the Taipei Times. “Only 20nm technology can be used to [cost-efficiently] make low-power DDR4 and DDR4 chips, which together will account for 80 percent of the world’s DRAM market in 2018,” he said.

Samsung’s new Galaxy 6 smartphone and HTC’s One M9 handset are equipped with low-power DDR4 chips, Kau added.

In 2017, Nanya Technology will begin volume production of 20nm technology. Its plan call falls for upgrading half of its 60,000-wafer capacity to 20nm technology by licensing technology from Micron. Nanya now makes DRAM chips primarily on 30nm technology.

Regarding the global DRAM market outlook, Nanya Technology vice president Lee Pei-ing said “average selling prices of DRAM products would stabilize next quarter as demand gradually recovers from slow seasonal demand this quarter.”

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