Bits + chips
Himax expects TDDI chip sales to rebound in 1Q20
Cage Chao, Taipei; Jessie Shen, DIGITIMES

Himax Technologies expects its TDDI chip sales to rebound in the first quarter of 2020.

Himax' sales of its smartphone-use TDDI chips are expected to climb over 40% in 2019. The on-year sales growth is expected to become robust starting the first quarter of 2020, said the company, adding that growth for all of the year will also be strong.

Himax has also advanced its wafer-level optics (WLO) solutions to cover both structured light and time-of-flight (ToF) 3D sensing. The company disclosed it has adjusted structured light-based 3D sensing development to focus on non-smartphone applications, while actively pursuing smartphone makers' ongoing ToF 3D sensing projects with ecosystem partners by providing WLO optics.

Himax reported net revenues of US$164.3 million for the third quarter of 2019, down 3% sequentially and 12.8% on year. Gross margin for the third quarter stayed flat at 19.5%. The company posted non-IFRS loss per diluted ADS of US$0.04 for the quarter.

Himax expects to post flat sequential growth in fourth-quarter revenues, with gross margin to edge up slightly. The company estimated non-IFRS loss per diluted ADS of US$0.027-0.042.

"2019 has been a challenging year for Himax. Uncertainty in the global economy continues to overshadow the marketplace, where we are seeing waning demand in all industries that consume display. This, combined with prevailing LCD industry capacity oversupply, has led to severe pricing pressure for panels which inevitably affected the sales and margin of display driver IC across all of our major product segments including TV, smartphone and automotive," said Jordan Wu, president and CEO of Himax.

Himax saw its smartphone TDDI chip business negatively affected by foundries' capacity constraints during 2018. Although the issue was resolved toward the end of 2018, the delay eliminated the company's ability to participate in major design-in opportunities that would have driven the business in 2019, Himax noted.

The anticipated over 40% rise in Himax' smartphone TDDI sales will come below the company's target set previously, it continued.

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