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Toshiba & SanDisk stop NAND flash production to reduce supply

16 December 2008 | By Mark Osborne | News > Cleanroom

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Toshiba and SanDisk are cutting 300mm production by approximately 75,000wspm.In an effort to reduce the oversupply of NAND flash memory as ASPs are projected to fall by approximately 65% in 2008, JV partners Toshiba and SanDisk are attempting to cut production by 30% with production stoppages. Production at their massive 300mm facilities, Fab 3 & Fab 4 in Yokkaichi, Japan will halt production from December 31 through January 12. Importantly, when production resumes only 70% of current capacity will be utilized. The measures will remain in place until the market conditions improve, according to the companies.

Toshiba’s Fab 3 reached full capacity of 150,000wspm (wafer starts per month) at the end of 2007. Bit growth has continued through most of 2008 with technology node migrations. Fab 4, started production in Q407 and was projected to reach a capacity of 110,000wspm by the end of 2008. Total capacity at Fab 4, one of the largest fabs ever built is approximately 230,000wspm.

Based on these capacity ramp projections, Toshiba and SanDisk are cutting 300mm production by approximately 75,000wspm.

Toshiba also said that NAND flash production at its two 200mm fabs, also located at Yokkaichi would stop production for four days, during the year-end and new-year period.

Due to the overall current economic slowdown, Toshiba will also stop production for short periods at some of its other fabs. Its 300mm logic fab will see the CMOS image sensor lines production stopped January 5 and 6 for maintenance and other lines will stop for 22 days from December 24 to January 14.

At its analog IC operations in Kitakyushu, production will stop for 25 days from December 25 to January 18, while its Himeji operations will stop for 18 days from December 20 to January 6.

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