TSMC expected to post be 3rd largest capex in global IC industry

Taipei--Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC, ???), the world's largest contract chip maker, is expected to have the third largest capital expenditure in the global integrated circuit (IC) industry in 2017, according to US-based advisory IC Insights.

In a research note, posted on its website on Thursday, IC Insights said that TSMC is expected to assign US$10 billion in capex for 2017, trailing only South Korea-based Samsung Electronics Co's forecast US$12.5 billion and U.S-based Intel Corp's estimated US$12 billion.

The research showed that TSMC's capex for 2017 will be about 2 percent lower than the US$10.25 billion spent in 2016, which was up 27 percent from a year earlier.

In late February, Mark Liu (???), TSMC's president and co-chief executive officer, told the company's annual supplier forum that the chip maker will focus on high-end technology development, including sophisticated 7, 5 and even 3 nanometer processes this year, in a bid to maintain its lead over competitors.

Currently, TSMC accounts for more than 50 percent of global wafer foundry operations business.

United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC, ??), the second largest contract chip maker in Taiwan, is expected to assign US$2 billion in capex for 2017, about 30 percent lower than a year earlier, IC Insights said.

The advisory firm said UMC could have the 7th largest capex tied with U.S-based contract chip maker GlobalFoundries Inc.

The IC Insight report showed that South Korea's dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chip maker SK Hynix Inc. is fourth in the 2017 rankings with an expected US$6 billion in capex.

After acquiring Taiwan's DRAM supplier Inotera Memories Inc. (???) in 2016, U.S-based Micron Technology Inc. is expected to assign US$5 billion for capex to take fifth place in the 2017 rankings ahead of China's contract chip maker Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC, ??), which is expected to have capex of US$2.3 billion, IC Insights said. The advisory firm predicted that aggregate capex for the global IC industry will total US$72.31 billion in 2017, up 6 percent from a year earlier.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel