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TSMC capital spending up for 2Q08

30 April 2008 | By Mark Osborne | News > Cleanroom

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TSMCTSMC has said that capital spending for 2008 will be approximately $1.8 billion, down from its revised final figure in 2007 of $2.6 billion, a 31 percent decrease year-on-year. Executives had previously stated that CapEx for 2008 would be significantly lower than the figure for 2007 but had not guided to specific levels.

In a conference call with financial analysts, TSMC executives noted that CapEx for the year would be front-end loaded. The Taiwanese foundry said it spent approximately $484 million in the first quarter of 2008 and would spend more than 60 percent of the CapEx budget by the end of the second quarter.

Second quarter spending would therefore be in the range of $600 million and would be the peak quarter for equipment purchases for 2008.

As with previous years, the majority of spending is targeted towards 300mm fab capacity expansions and technology node migrations. TSMC expects to increase 300mm capacity by 25 percent in 2008, down from the 43 percent increase in 2007 and a 33 percent increase in 2006.

The major fab capacity increase is targeting Fab 14, TSMC’s leading-edge and largest 300mm facility, which is projected to ramp from 55,666wspm in the first quarter to 76,333wspm in the fourth quarter of 2008.

Fab 14 will surpass the wafer starts level of Fab 12 for the first time in the third quarter. Fab 12’s current ramp phase is nearly at full capacity and therefore the ramp through the year is marginal.

TSMC

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