NAND flash makers under pressure in falling market

NAND flash makers under pressure in falling market

Market news |
By Peter Clarke

Global NAND flash revenue was US$10.29 billion in 4Q22, down 25 percent QoQ, according to market analyst TrendForce. NAND flash shipments were up 5.3 percent while average selling prices (ASPs) fell 22.8 percent.

TrendForce predicts NAND Flash revenue drop further in 1Q23 with a sequential – albeit seasonal – decrease of 8.1 percent.

In 4Q22 Kioxia, Micron, SK Hynix lost market share while Samsung and Western Digital gained market share.

Ranking of NAND flash manufacturers by revenue 4Q22. Source: TrendForce

Kioxia’s revenue fell 30.5 percent due to weak demand from PC and smartphone clients and data centers readjusting their inventory. Micron generated a quarterly revenue of US$1.1 billion – a 34.7 percent QoQ drop. Micron was able to ship their 232 layer flash memories inside SSDs with 176-layer quad-level cell memories set to follow.

Market leader Samsung sold US$3.48 billion of NAND flash memory in 4Q22, down 19.1 percent sequentially. Samsung increased its market share to 33.8 percent and has said it has no plans to cut back on production.

SK Group – SK Hynix and Solidigm – has also been affected by client destocking and posted a fourth quarter revenue of US$1.76 billion — down 30.9 percent QoQ. Western Digital (WDC) reported a 20 percent increase in bit shipments in 4Q22 despite the sudden dip in prices. However, their NAND Flash revenue only hit US$1.66 billion, down 3.8 percent QoQ.

Kioxia, Micron, Western Digital, and SK Hynix are expected to continue to cut back on production, while Samsung uses its market volume to press forward.

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