TOKYO Toshiba Corp. has unveiled plans to invest over ¥ 2 trillion ($18 billion) over the three years with half of the expenditures allocated for semiconductors, mainly on expanding production of NAND flash memory.
In a mid-term business plan announced Thursday (May 11), Japan-based Toshiba confirmed earlier plans to increase NAND flash output, by doubling production capacity through two new fabs, said Toshiba president and chief executive Atsutoshi Nishida during a presentation.
In early April, Toshiba and its NAND partner SanDisk Corp. had unveiled plans for Fab 4, to be built on Toshiba's Yokkaichi premises. Fab 4 will produce 100,000 wafers a month and is slated to begin operating the fourth quarter of 2007.
Toshiba confirmed rumors circulating about a second fab, Fab 5, which will be located elsewhere. "With Fab 4, the Yokkaichi site will be filled up. We are looking for a site for Fab 5," Nishida said.
Fab 5 is slated to begin operating in fiscal 2008, with Toshiba and SanDisk sharing ownership.
Answering concerns about possible oversupply, Nishida said, "Though we have budgeted ¥ 1,020 billion on semiconductors, we'll decide the actual execution of the investment based on the market situation. But our capacity would be far shorter than the NAND demand expected in the future.
Toshiba expects the NAND flash market to reach $23 billion in 2008, up from $17 billion this year.
The mid-term business plan calls for sales to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 7 percent. Toshiba expects to realize a 5-percent profit margin.
Sales of electronic devices are projected to rise 18 percent annually, from $14.6 billion the current fiscal year to $20.6 billion for the fiscal 2008 year ending March 2009.