Hynix preps ‘drastic’ solution to its woes

Announcement next week, says restructuring chief

Hynix will even consider striking a deal with Samsung if its attempt to build an alliance with Micron falls through, the head of the company's Restructuring Committee has said.

Shin Kook-hwan, who chairs the panel formed under Hynix's creditors to oversee the hunt for a solutions to the ailing chip company's financial woes, told Korean TV that the company will announce a "drastic self-rehabilitation package" next week, today's Korea Herald reports.

Curiously, a Hynix Restructuring Committee official, Lee Kwang Seok, said earlier this week that Micron will make some sort of offer for Hynix next week. However, the committee's general secretary, Choi Soo, said later that such a claim was inappropriate and premature, but clearly some short-term announcement is being planned.

Micron's representatives returned to the US a week ago, and the two companies announced they had agreed a framework in which future alliance talks would be conducted.

Shin's comments suggest that the company is worried that Micron will demand too much of Hynix's negotiators. The US company is certainly in a very strong position. Hynix needs a deal far more than it does, but it clearly doesn't want to bend over backwards for Micron in order to strike a deal.

"If Micron demands too much in forming an alliance, Hynix will go its own way since it is capable of staying afloat on its own, which is a view shared by creditors," Shin said. Going its "own way" includes approaching its Korean rival, Samsung, he added.

Shin, who is a former Korean commerce, industry and energy minister, was first to suggest Hynix was looking at alliances with other memory producers and named Micron as a prospective partner long before either company officially announced they had begun exploratory talks. He also said the company might even be shut down if a solution to its problems could not be found.

Shin said attempts to sell off Hynix plant was proving more complicated than originally anticipated, and that the company is looking to seek deals with local technology start-ups. ®

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