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Hynix creditors consider killing company off

Or merging it with a competitor

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Hynix may be shut down or sold to a foreign competitor if it proves unviable, the head of creditors' committee managing the ailing memory maker's recovery has said.

"If Hynix is viewed viable, we have plans to keep it afloat," said committee chief Shin Kook-hwan in an interview with the Korean Yonhap newswire.

"But if that is not the case, the company should go," he warned.

He also said that the committee is considering the merger of the company with one of its rivals - perhaps Micron Technology, apparently named by Shin as one of the list of potential partners.

Hynix's local competitor, Samsung, is not so listed. Samsung "should have its own way to go", he said.

Shin - who is a former Korean commerce, industry and energy minister - did appear confident that Hynix's problems can be resolved. He said that the company's return to profitability must come through "competition and thorough market principles", which suggests an end to ongoing cash bail-outs from the company's creditors.

It also explains the company's plan to increase its expenditure on new equipment by 500 per cent next year. That programme - if approved by Shin's committee - is clearly designed to move Hynix to the cutting-edge chip fabrication. ®

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