Toshiba rides Apple Inc.’s ballooning sales

“Unlike many beleaguered constituents of Japan Inc, Toshiba Corp, has reason to feel cheerful about ballooning sales at Apple Inc – millions of the iPhones it sells are loaded with NAND flash memory made by Japan’s last big chip maker,” Tim Kelly reports for Reuters.
“At times as much as two-thirds of memory chips churned out by Toshiba’s plants in Japan will end up in iPhones, analysts estimate,” Kelly reports. “That demand is underpinning income at Toshiba and will likely mean the world’s No. 2 maker of NAND flash chips behind Samsung Electronics will forecast a rebound in operating profit for the business year just started. ‘Apple is probably their largest customer and depending on the time of the year when Apple procures from Toshiba I suspect it could be as high as 70 percent,’ said Damian Thong, an analyst at Macquarie in Tokyo. ‘The next contributor to growth of NAND flash at Toshiba, one of them, will probably be the ramp-up for the next iPhone.’”

Kelly reports, “Market researcher IHS iSuppli estimates an insatiable Apple, which sold 35 million iPhones in the three months to March 31, will consume a quarter of global flash memory supply this year. Market revenue will, IHS iSuppli predicts, jump 8 percent to $23 billion. ‘We believe Apple’s strong results are positive for Toshiba,’ Goldman Sachs’ analyst Ikuo Matsuhashi said in a report. Second quarter iPhone ‘shipments surpassed consensus projections,’ he noted.”

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