Toshiba cuts NAND Flash memory fab by 30%

July 24, 2012 — Toshiba Corporation (TOKYO:6502) will reduce its NAND Flash memory semiconductor production by 30% with new, lower output at its Yokkaichi Operation fab in Mie Prefecture, Japan.

About one year ago, Toshiba and its partner SanDisk Corporation (NASDAQ:SNDK) opened Fab 5, the third 300mm NAND wafer fabrication facility at the site.

Toshiba blames a NAND Flash oversupply for USD memories and memory cards for the need to cut production. Prices for NAND in these sectors have fallen throughout 2012, Toshiba reports. This year, Toshiba is celebrating 25 years since it invented NAND.

In 2011, analyst firm IHS praised Toshiba’s ability to bounce back quickly from the 3/11 earthquake and tsunami off the coast of Sendai. “Strong demand, fortunate fab location, and quick wafer supply replenishment allowed Toshiba Corp. to quickly regain some of its lost market share,” according to the IHS iSuppli Memory & Storage Service. IHS puts Toshiba as the second largest NAND supplier globally, behind Samsung, both with 30+% market share.

Toshiba expects supply and demand for NAND flash chips to balance out by September, thanks to high growth rates for PCs and smartphones. Toshiba will adjust NAND Flash output accordingly.

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