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TSMC to post revenue growth through 4Q18

Monica Chen, Hsinchu; Jessie Shen, DIGITIMES, Jul. 17, 2018 – 

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) is expected to post sequential revenue increases in the third and fourth quarters of 2018, thanks largely to a ramp-up of orders for smartphone SoCs, according to industry sources.

Chip shipments for new and upcoming smartphones including the iPhones and Huawei's Mate series have started kicking off, said the sources, adding that TSMC's revenues will return to sequential growth in the third quarter following by two quarters of decreases.

TSMC's revenues are expected to increase at a moderate pace sequentially in the third quarter before reaching an all-time high in the fourth quarter, the sources indicated. Shipments for the new iPhones will remain a significant contributor to the foundry's sales performance in the second half of 2018, the sources said.

Apple will reportedly roll out three iPhone models in September. The upcoming lineup will be powered by Apple's custom A12 processor built using TSMC's 7nm process technology.

TSMC's shipments for the upcoming iPhones are expected to climb to the peak between October and November, the sources noted. The foundry will also start shipping 7nm chips for Huawei's flagship Mate 20 series slated for launch in the fourth quarter, the sources said.

TSMC is reportedly the manufacturer of HiSilicon's Kirin 980 SoC that will power Huawei's upcoming Mate 20 models.

In addition, shipments for Nvidia's new-generation GPUs will play another driver of TSMC's revenue growth in the fourth quarter, the sources identified.

TSMC saw its June revenues decline 13% sequentially, dragging down its overall revenues for the second quarter by nearly 6% on quarter to arrive at NT$233.28 billion (US$7.63 billion). Market watchers attributed the revenue drops to a slowdown in orders for mining ASICs from Bitmain and graphics card processors from Nvidia.

TSMC's revenues for the first half of 2018 increased 7.5% from a year earlier to NT$481.36 billion.

TSMC is scheduled to hold its quarterly investors meeting on July 19 to discuss its performance in the second quarter and provide its outlook for the third quarter.

At its last investors meeting, TSMC estimated revenues in US dollars would fall 7-8% sequentially to between US$7.8 billion and US$7.9 billion in the second quarter. Revenues in US dollars for all of 2018 will increase up to 10%, compared to the previously-estimated 10-15%.


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