STMicro Sees Auto Industry Driving 2021 Sales

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Chipmaker STMicroelectronics is stepping up investment to meet a sudden surge in demand from the auto industry, confident it can reap the benefits in an overstretched semiconductor industry, its chief executive said on Thursday.

The FrancoItalian group sees an accelerated path towards its 12 billion annual sales target, which it had previously postponed by a year to 2023, JeanMarc Chery told analysts on a call.

STMicros shares, which were down in early Paris trading, reversed course on the upbeat comments and were up by close to 5 at 1016 GMT.

We see clearly this accelerated path, Chery said.

Thats the reason why we have increased our capex capital expenditure plan in order to fulfill the strong market demand.

STMicro, whose top customers include electric carmaker Tesla , expects sales of silicon carbide chips, aimed at improving the charging capacity of batteries in electric vehicles and the time between charges, to reach 450500 million this year, with strong growth in second half, Chery said.

He did not give a comparable figure for 2020.

Chery also said he expected no material change in sales of sensors and other sophisticated chips for the smartphone industry in 2021.

The comments alleviated some investor concerns over bottlenecks seen recently in the semiconductor industry, with carmakers such as Volkswagen and Toyota forced to halt some production due to a shortage of chips.

Clearly, there is an important gap today between the shortterm demand of the…

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