Report: DRAM module makers ride PC makers’ gains

June 29, 2007 – Kingston and Smart Modular Technologies continued to lead the DRAM module sector in 2006, but other firms shot up the ladder riding success at customers Lenovo and Hewlett-Packard, according to data from iSuppli Corp.

Global DRAM module revenues should tick up about 2.4% this year to ~$12.3 billion, closely tracking the ~2.4% growth projected for the global DRAM market, seen inching up to $31 billion. OEM sales are seen slower (1.1%) than third-party module sales (3.8%), though, noted the analyst firm.

Ramaxel Technology Ltd. raced to the No.3 spot in the market with 85% growth ($648 million), thanks to its business as an OEM for No.4 PC maker Lenovo but also Hewlett-Packard, which has been gaining ground in the PC industry, the firm noted. Also busting the growth curve was Taiwan’s TwinMOS Technology, rising from No.13 in 2005 to No.5 in 2006 ($494 million), its 127% growth attributed to cooperation with Chinese module distributors, which gains access to China’s hot economic growth and consumer demand for “white-box” PCs and memory upgrades.

Another firm besting the ~38% total DRAM module growth in 2006 was Power Quotient International, which more than doubled sales after forging ties with Japan-based Asset Managers Group, in a move to gain financial and capital expertise. Transcend ($359 million, +56.6%) was the only other top-1- firm to exceed the industry growth.

Top DRAM module firm Kingston Technology’s 18% marketshare is more than three times its nearest rivals, and the firm is looking to own as much of the nonmanufacturing aspects of memory as it can in order to keep costs down, including an expansion of its investment in testing and assembly, noted Ally Liao, analyst for memory/storage at iSuppli Corp., in a statement. “The large market share owned by Kingston reflects its huge purchasing power, and this also allows the company to be an OEM-like module marker and have a powerful role in influencing module price,” she said.

Meanwhile, No.2 DRAM module firm Smart Modular ($668 million, +38.4%) is looking to expand its product lineup beyond high-end server modules to industrial PCs, as well as displays combining embedded PC platforms and LCD touch screen monitors, the firm noted.


DRAM module suppliers, 2006
(Revenue in US $M)

Company name (2005 rank)…….2006 revenue…….vs. 2005 (%)…….2006 market share

Kingston Technology (1)………………..2210………………..1475 (49.8%)………………..18.1%
Smart Modular Technologies (2)……..668………………….483 (38.4%)………………….5.5%
Ramaxel Technology (7)…………………648………………….325 (99.4%)………………….5.3%
A-Data (3)………………………………………..618………………….453 (36.5%)………………….5.1%
TwinMOS Technology (13)………………494………………….418 (18.1%)………………….4.0%
Crucial Technology (4)……………………476…………………..355 (33.9%)………………….3.9%
PQI (16)…………………………………………..431…………………..202 (113.1%)…………………3.5%
Corsair Memory (8)………………………….425………………….317 (34.2%)………………….3.5%
Apacer Technology (5)…………………….381………………….355 (7.3%)……………………3.1%
Transcend (12)………………………………..359………………..229 (56.6%)……………………2.9%
Wintec Industries (9)………………………..278………………….250 (11.1%)………………….2.3%
Others……………………………………………6708………………….4611 (45.5%)………………..54.9%
TOTAL………………………………………….12229………………….8833 (38.4%)………………..100%

Source: iSuppli Corp.

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