Toshiba eyes up global partners

Toshiba eyes up global partners
David Manners in Tokyo Toshiba is looking for partners for its semiconductor operation. “We can see a lot of options from total merger to finding a partner for a dedicated area – for instance DRAM – anything could happen,” said Yoshihide Fujii, general manager of Toshiba’s semiconductor planning division. “Our alliance strategy is our most important business strategy,” said Fujii, adding “my dream is that in 2004 to 2005 Toshiba will be the number one company in the world in both profits and turnover.” To achieve this Toshiba needs to be a certain size. “We can’t afford to make the investment in capital and people. We need to share the risks,” said Fujii. Toshiba is therefore considering an alliance strategy with either a Japanese or a foreign partner. “It makes no difference to us. I believe we should be more globalised,” said Fujii. Toshiba wants to stay in DRAMs. “We will be one of the key players,” said Fujii, “we have enough capacity to take 12 to 13 per cent of the world market. We wish to be in the first group of DRAM manufacturers. We are now shipping 100 per cent PC100 and will be the number one Rambus producer.” Fujii sees a major change coming in the DRAM industry that will sort out the winners from the losers. “Up to now we have had one product for the industry but now we’re going to have Rambus, double data rate and synchronous.” The usage of DRAM will become the key focus, said Fujii, with memory architectures in switching and communications equipment being different from the DRAM architectures used in PCs. “The volume of production may not be the only critical factor. Design will be more important.”


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