Chartered: Demand rises, losses shrink

October 23, 2003 – Singapore’s Chartered Semiconductor, the world’s fourth-largest chipmaker, posted 3Q03 revenues of $137.7 million, at the higher range of estimates with a reduced loss compared to a year ago — but warned that it needs to bring in a lot more money before it can start turning a profit.

Chartered reported 3Q03 revenues of $137.7 million, up 32% from a year ago, thanks to growing demand for PC components including motherboards, PC peripherals, and hard disk-drive controllers. Revenues from 0.13-micron processes represented 8% of total revenues compared with 1% in 4Q02, while revenues from advanced technologies were up 50% from 4Q02.

A 3Q03 net loss of approximately $75.9 million marks the company’s 11th consecutive quarterly loss, but was smaller than anticipated and nearly half the company’s 3Q02 net loss. Capacity utilization was 59%, compared with 39% in 3Q02 and 55% in 2Q03. Wafer shipments of 153,700 wafers were up 37.4% from 3Q02 and nearly 10% from 2Q03.

Chartered estimated 4Q03 revenues would be up over 20% sequentially, but also revealed it needs to achieve between $250 million and $270 million in revenues in order to break even, including contributions from its Fab 5 JV facility — about $40 million more than it expects to make in 4Q.

Nonetheless, CEO Chia Song Hwee reiterated plans to open Fab 7, the company’s new $3 billion 300mm facility, on schedule in 3Q04, adding that it is still looking for partners to share in the costs.


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