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Sony to invest US$575m to boost chip production

TOKYO - Sony Corp announced Tuesday that it plans to invest a total of some 60 billion yen (US$575 million) to build two new facilities for the fabrication of semiconductor components for flat-panel televisions and other digital equipment at its subsidiary Sony Semiconductor Kyushu Co.

For Sony, making more of its own semiconductor devices is the key to greater profitability now that audiovisual devices have gone digital. The latest announcement is part of the company's larger three-year plan to invest some 500 billion yen in semiconductors through fiscal 2006.

Sony said it will invest around 10 billion yen to build a new facility at the Kyushu subsidiary's Kokubu Technology Center for the manufacture of liquid-crystal components and driver chips for rear projection TVs.

The company said it also plans to invest some 50 billion yen to build a new facility and introduce new machinery at the Kumamoto Technology Center for production of CMOS image sensors for camera phones.

Sony is already the world leader in CCD image sensors, but once the new Kumamoto facility gets up and running in the spring of 2006 the company go gunning for the market for low-power CMOS sensors.

(Asia Pulse/Nikkei)

Dec 23, 2004
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