Toshiba outperforms in the NAND flash memory market in Q3

El Segundo, Calif. — Japan’s Toshiba Corp. outperformed in the NAND flash memory market in the third quarter as its revenue surged during the period, according to iSuppli Corp. The No.-2 NAND flash supplier increased its NAND revenue by 47.5 percent to reach $1.4 billion, up from $924 million in the second quarter, reports the market researcher.

The report, “Flash Market Forecast to Grow 1% in 2009, 25% in 2010“, shows that global NAND flash memory revenue in the third quarter rose to $3.94 billion, up 25.5 percent from $3.1 billion in the second quarter, according to iSuppli.

“Toshiba in the third quarter was able to capitalize on favorable NAND market conditions with its expanded capacity and high average selling price (ASP),” said Michael Yang, senior analyst, memory and storage for iSuppli, in a statement. “The company was able to expand its shipments. Furthermore, the company is the leader in production of three-bit-per-cell parts, which have lower manufacturing costs, thus improving profitability.”

Yang said Toshiba’s three-bit-per-cell flash memories take multi-level cell (MLC) to the next level, tripling the amount of storage compared to regular flash. They are used in consumer storage media such as USB, Secure Digital (SD) and microSD products.

In addition, Toshiba’s revenue growth increased its share of the global NAND flash revenue to 34.6 percent in the third quarter, up from 29.4 percent in the second quarter, solidifying its second-place position behind Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., said iSuppli.

iSuppli reports that the overall average selling price (ASP) for NAND rose by 18.5 percent in the second quarter and by 40 percent in the third quarter. ASPs are projected to hold steady in the fourth quarter with a 2.9 percent decrease, based on iSuppli’s preliminary estimate.

Yang said suppliers were able to reverse the oversupply, increase prices and expand market revenue by shutting down some of their 200-millimeter product lines.

NAND flash is expected to achieve double-digit growth with a projected 16.4 percent rise in revenue for the year. This is in comparison to the global semiconductor revenue in 2009 that is expected to decrease by 12.4 percent.

All six NAND flash memory suppliers achieved double-digit-percentage revenue growth in the third quarter, according to iSuppli.