SAN FRANCISCOTaiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd. (TSMC) appears all but certain to eclipse its most recent estimate for 2009 capital spending, thanks to an eye-popping $1.24 billion spent on equipment buys in December alone.
In 39 separate transactions between Dec. 2 and Dec. 28, TSMC bought tools from 15 different vendors, according to filings made with Taiwan's stock exchange. The buys bring the foundry giant's capital expenditures for the year to approximately $2.875 billion, higher than the company's most recent estimate for the year.
In October, TSMC (Hsinchu, Taiwan) raised its capital spending estimate for the year to $2.7 billion from $2.3 billion. At the time, the company said it had spent about $1.36 billion on capital expenditures for the first three quarters of the year.
TSMC made nearly $195 million worth of equipment purchases in October and slightly more than $80 million worth in November, according to filings.
The December tally includes three separate purchases from lithography vendor ASML NV totaling more than $215 million, nearly $227 million worth of gear from Applied Materials Inc., nearly $100 million worth of equipment from KLA-Tencor Corp. and more than $97 million in buys from Tokyo Electron Ltd. Other vendors TSMC has bought tools from this month include Ebara Corp., Novellus Systems Corp., Hitachi Kokusai Electric Inc., Dainippon Screen Mfg. Co. Ltd., Varian Semiconductor Equipment Associates Inc., Lam Research Corp. and others.
A spokesperson for TSMC did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the capital spending estimate.