SAN DEIGO, Calif. -- Japan's Renesas Technology Corp. said that it aggressively plans to boost its international business and expand its microcontroller share, but shaky economic conditions could delay its lofty goals.
At its technology event here on Monday (Oct. 13), Renesas also vowed that it would continue to keep its integrated device manufacturing (IDM) strategy intact, especially at a time when many of its rivals are moving towards a fab-lite or fabless model. And the company is racing to develop next-generation chips based on 32-nm technology.
On the business front, like all chip makers, Renesas (Tokyo) faces the possible impact of the current economic crisis and IC slowdown. The world's largest supplier of microcontrollers sells its products into the slumping automotive, consumer, industrial and related sectors. It also makes analog products, system-on-a-chip (SOC) devices, wireless ICs and others.
Renesas has not publically lowered its sales and profit forecasts for fiscal 2008. But clearly, the current economic crisis in the United States and elsewhere could have a ''severe effect'' on the semiconductor industry, warned Katsuhiro Tsukamoto, president and chief operating officer at Renesas.
"Consumer demand will drop," Tsukamoto told EE Times in an interview. Worldwide capital spending ''will slow down.''
In 2002, Japan's Hitachi Ltd. and Mitsubishi Electric combined their logic chip units to form Renesas. In 2007, Renesas was the world's eighth largest IC maker in terms of sales, according to iSuppli Corp. (El Segundo, Calif.).