Taiwan’s TSMC third-quarter net profit climbs 28 percent; analysts see iPhone 7 boost

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co’s (TSMC) third-quarter net profit jumped 28 percent, hitting a new quarterly record, as analysts said earnings were boosted by sales of chips and processors for Apple Inc’s new iPhone 7.

The world’s largest contract chipmaker said in a statement on Thursday that July-September net profit climbed to T$96.8 billion ($3.08 billion). That beat both the T$95.2 billion mean forecast in a Thomson Reuters/Eikon survey of analysts’ forecasts and the previous quarterly record of T$80 billion.

TSMC’s third-quarter revenue rose 23 percent to T$260.4 billion, another quarterly record and also ahead of guidance the firm offered in July. Last week TSMC said revenue for the first nine months of the year rose 7.1 percent to T$685.71 billion.

The strong third-quarter performance means that with three months of the year to go, some analysts expect the firm will be able to beat its guidance for 5-10 percent growth in revenue for the whole of 2016.

In its statement, TSMC said third-quarter revenue growth “mainly reflected stronger-than-expected smartphone demand”, without citing customers for its chips.

Anticipation has intensified about how the iPhone 7s, launched in early September, have been selling in the wake of the scrapping of a rival smartphone by Samsung Electronics Co in what could be one of the costliest product safety failures in tech history.

TSMC said last week that revenue for September alone surged 39 percent.

According to Taiwan-based Fubon Research, TSMC is the sole source for the A10 processor used in the iPhone 7 and also the main foundry source for chips in the smartphone.

Based on an estimated shipment of 82 million units of iPhone 7s in the second half of this year, Fubon expects the iPhone 7 business to likely account for at least 10 percent to 15 percent of TSMC’s revenue in the second half of 2016.

[Source:- Reuters]