LONDON – Just six weeks after Toshiba Corp. announced it was cutting its production of NAND flash chips by about 30 percent due to market oversupply and chip price concerns, a maker of solid-state drives has signaled it can't get enough of the memory chips.
"Despite achieving bookings in excess of our expectations for our second fiscal quarter, we were not able to meet our previously stated revenue guidance due primarily to constraints in NAND flash supply," said Ryan Petersen, CEO of OCZ Technology Group Inc. (San Jose, Calif.), in a statement on the company's second fiscal quarter financial results, issued Wednesday (Sept. 5). "During the month of August we experienced a significant shortage on certain NAND flash components, based on industry-wide tightening of supply, leaving OCZ with an undersupply of the 2X-nm MLC NAND used in our Vertex and Agility Line of products," Petersen said.
"While we believe that the situation will resolve itself, subject to market conditions, we plan to hasten our transition to new process nodes in order to help ease these supply constraints," added Petersen.
When Toshiba announced the immediate cut in production in July it said it expected the supply and demand balance to improve in the third quarter due to growth of PC and smartphone shipments and that it would continue to monitor the situation and resume production ahead of increasing demand.
Many of the leading NAND flash suppliers, including Toshiba, Samsung and Micron have significant commitments to Apple Inc. to supply NAND flash. Apple is reported to have recently cut its order of NAND flash memory from Samsung. It is not clear whether OCZ's "industry-wide" supply shortage could have resulted from NAND flash memory inventory being taken up for use by Apple in its forthcoming model of iPhone expected to launch on Sept. 12.
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