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February 18, 2010

Global DRAM revenue to reach $31.9bn in 2010, says iSuppli

Elpida revenue up 64% sequentially

By CBR Staff Writer

Global DRAM business is set to return to annual revenue growth in 2010, bringing an end to three consecutive years of decline, according to iSuppli.

According to iSuppli’s preliminary forecast, the global DRAM revenue is set to rise to $31.9bn in 2010, an increase of 40.4% compared to $22.7bn in 2009. This follows declines of 3.7% in 2009, 25.1% in 2008 and 7.5% in 2007.

DRAM industry has posted revenue of more than $8bn for the fourth quarter of 2009. Elpida’s revenue increased by 64% to $1.7bn compared to the third quarter of 2009. The company also turned a profit of $230m, the first time the company has been in the black on a quarterly basis since 2007. It attained higher-than average bit growth of 30% as well as an ASP appreciation of 26%, iSuppli said.

Micron’s DRAM revenue increased by 50% compared to the third quarter. Hynix and Samssung rose by 42% and 25%, respectively.

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Mike Howard, senior analyst for DRAM at iSuppli, said: “This year will build on the momentum built up in the fourth quarter of 2009, when overall industry revenue increased by 40% sequentially. Increased bit shipments combined with higher average selling prices (ASPs) were the main factors driving the robust growth. ASPs climbed by 16% and bit shipments rose by 21%. The result was revenue of $8.5bn in revenue in the fourth quarter.

“iSuppli believes that the DRAM market’s strong performance in the fourth quarter will not presage a downturn, such as what occurred when the internet bubble burst in 2001. However, conditions in 2010 are radically different from 2001 when the internet bubble burst and capital spending explosion resulted in unsustainable growth. Instead, iSuppli foresees a period where the DRAM industry will see solid revenue and steady profits as DRAM suppliers have done a good job managing manufacturing capacity.”

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