Taipei, Thursday, March 5, 2015 12:10 (GMT+8)
mostly cloudy
Taipei
18°C
Digitimes Insight: Japan earthquake impact on semiconductor industry
Nobunaga Chai, DIGITIMES Research, Taipei [Tuesday 15 March 2011]

Areas affected by Japan's March 11 earthquake, aftershocks and the quake-triggered tsunamis include the prefectures of Fukushima, Miyagi, Aomori, Yamagata, Iwate and Akita.

Not to mention its focus on the development of agriculture and tourism, northeast Japan is also considered one of the nation's major manufacturing locations. Several of Japan's major semiconductor companies locate their manufacturing spots in the northeast prefectures, for example, Toshiba's 8-inch wafer fab in Iwate, Renesas Electronics' factories in Aomori, Hokkaido and Yamagata, Elpida Memory's backend manufacturing facility in Akita and Fujitsu's plants in Fukushima.

Disruptions in transportation and power infrastructure will inevitably have a certain degree of impact on chip companies. Moreover, there is also concern about supply constraints for upstream materials.

With its major production hub in Nishigo Village of Fukushima, a prefecture close to the epicenter of the earthquake, Shin-Etsu Handotai (SEH) is expected to suffer significantly from the impact. SEH is still unable to disclose when normal operations at the facilities can be resumed.

SEH's Shirakawa plant, Fukushima Prefecture, produced about 22% of total silicon wafer demand in the world in 2010. Monthly capacity at the plant reaches as high as 800,000 12-inch wafers, accounting for more than 60% of SEH's overall production capacity of 1.2 million units.

Many chipmakers have claimed that they are capable of activating alternatives if necessary. In addition, wafer inventory among companies remains at a sufficient level of two to three months. However, if SEH's supplies cannot return to normal over a longer period of time, the semiconductor market will struggle with wafer shortage issues later in the year.

In 2010, Japan's semiconductor industry generated sales of US$44.6 billion, up 16.4% from 2009 levels. The growth also represented a recovery for the sector following two years of sales drops. Japan accounted for 15.9% of total semiconductor revenues worldwide in 2010, compared to 16.9% in 2009 and 19.5% in 2008.

Japan top-5 semiconductor companies: Revenues and worldwide ranking, 2009-2010 (US$m)

2010 Japan rank

Company

2010 revenues

2009 revenues

Y/Y

2010 WW rank

2009 WW rank

1

Toshiba

13,081

10,319

26.8%

3

3

2

Renesas

11,840

5,153

129.8%

5

9

3

Elpida

5,678

3,948

74.2%

10

15

4

Sony

5,336

4,468

19.4%

14

10

5

Panasonic

5,128

3,243

58.1%

15

18

Source: Digitimes Research, compiled by Digitimes, March 2011

Digitimes Research: Silicon wafer suppliers, market share 2010

Source: Digitimes Research, compiled by Digitimes, March 2011

Digitimes Research: Japan semiconductor industry and its share of WW market, 2005-10 (US$b)

Source: Digitimes Research, compiled by Digitimes, March 2011

Topics: Page 2

Realtime news
  • Taiwan market: 3G avergae download speed reaches 6.27Mbps, says NCC

    Mobile + telecom | 6min ago

  • Japan market: ZTE to launch Blade S6 for mid-range segment

    Mobile + telecom - Newswatch | 12min ago

  • 30% of 50-inch LCD TVs shipped in 2015 to be Ultra HD

    Displays | Mar 4, 22:23

  • Taiwan solar cell makers looking for idle equipment in China

    Green energy | Mar 4, 22:20

  • ASMedia appoints lawyers to defend patent lawsuit against VIA

    IT + CE - Stockwatch | Mar 4, 22:16

  • Worldwide server market grew 4.8% in shipments, while revenues increased 2.2% in 4Q14, says Gartner

    IT + CE | Mar 4, 22:14

  • Samsung loses top position in global 4Q14 smartphone market, says Gartner

    Mobile + telecom | Mar 4, 22:11

  • Smartphone platform providers eyeing emerging Africa market

    Mobile + telecom | Mar 4, 22:06

  • Digitimes Research: 24- and 27-inch monitor retail pricing increases in February

    Displays | Mar 4, 22:02

  • MWC 2015: MediaTek intros 64-bit SoCs for smartphones and tablets

    Bits + chips | Mar 4, 22:00

  • Casetek sees weaker profits in 4Q14

    Before Going to Press | Mar 4, 21:51

  • Casetek rumored to land chassis orders for iPhone for 3Q15

    Before Going to Press | Mar 4, 21:49

  • Mitac expected to see growing cloud computing sales in 2015

    Before Going to Press | Mar 4, 21:48

  • Nvidia invites Tesla CEO to chat on smart automobile industry at GTC 2015

    Before Going to Press | Mar 4, 21:47

  • Chipset vendors, equipment suppliers gearing up efforts to develop LTE-U devices

    Before Going to Press | Mar 4, 21:46

  • TSMC wins processor orders for second-generation Apple Watch, say rumors

    Before Going to Press | Mar 4, 21:43

  • Taiwan January manufacturing production index down on month, up on year, says MOEA

    Before Going to Press | Mar 4, 21:41

Pause
 | 
View more

2015 China IC design market forecast

RESEARCH EXTRAS | Jan 23, 10:50

Global economic growth is forecast to reach 3.8% in 2015, up from 3.3% in 2014. From the perspective of the electronics industry though, PC shipments will continue to decline, smartphone shipment growth will drop, and tablet shipments may decline. Despite the...

2015 global AP market forecast and vendor analysis

RESEARCH EXTRAS | Jan 23, 10:46

Digitimes Research estimates that total 2014 AP shipments will reach 1.52 billion units worldwide, up 19.6% from 2013, and in 2015 the global market will see shipments of 1.65 billion units, growing 8.5% on year. The slowdown is mainly due to a shrinking tablet...

Taiwan large-size LCD panels – 4Q 2014

TAIWAN FPD | Feb 17, 11:23

Taiwan-based makers saw their large-size TFT LCD panel shipments increase on year in fourth-quarter 2014, driven largely by demand for TV applications. But they are facing growing competition from China-based and Korea-based makers who are ramping up new production...

Taiwan LCD TVs – 4Q 2014

TAIWAN FPD | Feb 17, 11:07

Taiwan's LCD TV makers saw significant increases in shipments in the fourth quarter of 2014 thanks to strong seasonal demand, as well as Foxconn's shipments to Mexico to fulfill government procurement orders.

Taiwan small- to mid-size LCD panels – 4Q 2014

TAIWAN FPD | Feb 16, 15:11

Major Taiwan-based suppliers of small- to medium-size LCD panels changed their production strategies in fourth-quarter 2014 as the industry entered the slow season amid sluggish demand for smartphone applications and rising competition from China-based rivals...

2015 global notebook demand forecast
Wireless broadband developments in Southeast Asia markets
The transition to 4k TV - UHD TV market forecast, 2014-2017
  • Wireless broadband developments in Southeast Asia markets

    As of 2013, the 10 ASEAN nations had a total of over 700 million mobile subscriptions, with the CAGR from 2003-2013 reaching 24%. This Digitimes Research Special Report analyzes the various mobile broadband markets in ASEAN and looks at the respective trends in 4G LTE development for those markets.

  • Greater China touch panel shipment forecast through 2015

    This Special Report provides forecasts through 2015 for Greater China touch panel shipments with breakdowns based on technology (glass, film, resistive), application (smartphone, NB and tablet) and by firm.

  • 2014 global tablet demand forecast

    This report analyzes the main players, their strategies and shipments forecasts for 2014, as well as other factors contributing to either growth or decline in various segments within the tablet market, with a particular focus on Apple, Google, Samsung, and Microsoft, along with whitebox vendors.