Samsung Electronics’ DRAM sales fall 25 pct despite price cuts in Q4 last year
Samsung Electronics’ sales of memory semiconductors fell sharply due to the economic downturn and weak demand. Samsung Electronics, the No. 1 player in the industry, expanded its market share in DRAM despite sluggish sales.
According to Taiwanese market research firm TrendForce on the 3rd, global DRAM sales in the fourth quarter of last year were $12.281 billion, down 32.5% from the previous quarter. This contrasts with the decline rate in the fourth quarter of 2008 (-36%) during the global financial crisis.
By company, Samsung Electronics’ DRAM sales reached $5.54 billion in the fourth quarter of last year, accounting for 45.1% of total sales. Compared to the previous quarter (40.7%), it increased by 4.4 percentage points.
Samsung Electronics is the only DRAM company that increased its market share in the fourth quarter of last year. Sales fell 25.1% from $7.4 billion in the previous quarter.
“Samsung’s most aggressive price competition enabled us to increase shipments despite overall sluggish demand,” TrendForce said. “The drop in sales was the smallest among the top three companies.”
SK Hynix also remained in second place with 27.7% (US$3.398 billion) of market share. The combined market share of Korean memory companies such as Samsung Electronics and SK Hynix increased to 72.8% from 69.5% in the third quarter of last year.
On the other hand, Micron of the U.S., the third-largest company in the industry, saw its sales decline the most with sales of $3.398 billion in the fourth quarter of last year, down 41.2% in the previous quarter. The market share also fell 3.4 percentage points from 26.4 percent to 23.0 percent over the same period.
Meanwhile, the average selling price (ASP) continues to fall due to falling demand. In particular, prices of DDR4 and DDR5 server DRAM products fell 23-28% and 30-35%, respectively, in the fourth quarter of last year.
TrendForce said, “The operating profit ratio of all DRAM suppliers shrank significantly in the fourth quarter, and it is expected to turn into a deficit in the first quarter of this year.”