Micron latest in Japan chip crosshairs - Mobile World Live

Micron latest in Japan chip crosshairs

30 SEP 2022

Micron Technology became the latest chip company to benefit from a Japanese push to bolster its semiconductor sector, with the government plotting a JPY46.5 billion ($321.9 million) subsidy to boost production at the US company’s plants in the country.

The chipmaker plans to use the subsidy to increase production capacity for 1-beta DRAM employed in 5G and AI technologies, along with data centres.

Micron Technology EVP of global operations Manish Bhatia stated the company is a “longstanding industry partner” in Japan’s push to “grow and advance semiconductor production and innovation”.

The government previously backed a move by TSMC and Sony to construct a new chip factory in the nation.

Japan’s plan is also connected to a similar move by the US, as each nation seeks to reduce reliance on Chinese suppliers.

The Micron Technology investment was announced the same week US VP Kamala Harris visited Japan: Nikkei Asia reported she discussed a recently-approved $52 billion chip subsidy programme with the heads of local semiconductor companies.

Micron Technology revealed the Japan win a day after slashing its planned wafer fabrication equipment capex for fiscal 2023, the year to 1 September 2023.

President and CEO Sanjay Mehrotra explained in its earnings materials it expects near-term weakness in the “supply-demand environment”, with a near 50 per cent cut to its wafer capex part of a strategy to leave it in a position to “capitalise on the long-term demand for memory and storage”.

Net income of $8.7 billion in the year to 1 September was up from $5.9 billion in its fiscal 2021, with revenue growing from $27.7 billion to $30.8 billion.

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