Feeds

Fallen DRAMurai warrior Elpida files for bankruptcy protection

Japanese chipmaker finds itself in a $5.6bn hole

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Japanese chipmaker Elpida Memory filed for bankruptcy protection today after failing to find anyone willing to save it.

Despite rumours that a number of suitors were interested in slurping a stake in the DRAM manufacturer, including Micron Technology and Toshiba, Elpida has had to apply to restructure its business under protection as it staggers under debts of ¥448bn ($5.6bn).

"The circumstances around our company turned from bad to worse due to factors such as the record-breaking strong yen against the US dollar, and the steep fall of the price of DRAM products by fiercer competition in the DRAM industry," Elpida said in a canned statement.

"Within such continuing harsh management environment, an additional negative factor, which is a stagnation of demand for DRAM due to the great flood in Thailand in 2011, has arisen. Based on the background mentioned above, we have concluded that if we continue the business by ourselves, we will face cash shortage soon."

Elpida was formed in 1999 when the DRAM operations of NEC and Hitachi merged, and it listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange in 2004 after it slurped the DRAM division of Mitsubishi the year before.

The Japanese government stepped in to help the firm in 2009 and made Elpida the first company to trouser cash from a government financial aid programme. The firm got ¥30bn in emergency investment from the state-backed Development Bank of Japan and took out some huge loans with some other banks, the Japan Times said.

Unfortunately for Elpida, the DRAM market didn't get any better in the last four years as prices plummeted and the yen got stronger.

The fat lady isn't singing yet for Elpida - it could still get itself a white knight that might invest in or takeover the biz, but in the meantime its customers are likely to defect to Taiwanese or South Korean chipmakers like Nanya or Samsung.

Samsung has been gobbling up the chip market as Japanese firms run into trouble, not least because it boosted its DRAM business with quick diversification into the NAND chips used in smartphones, fondleslabs and cameras. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Premier League wants to PURGE ALL FOOTIE GIFs from social media
Not paying Murdoch? You're gonna get a right LEGALLING - thanks to automated software
Online tat bazaar eBay coughs to YET ANOTHER outage
Web-based flea market struck dumb by size and scale of fail
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
XBOX One will learn to play media from USB and DLNA sources
Hang on? Aren't those file formats you hardly ever see outside torrents?
Class war! Wikipedia's workers revolt again
Bourgeois paper-shufflers have 'suspended democracy', sniff unpaid proles
'Aaaah FFS, 'amazeballs' has made it into the OXFORD DICTIONARY'
Plus: 'EE, how shocking, ANOTHER problem I face with your service'
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.