Memory maker Qimonda files for insolvency


— 3:44 PM on January 23, 2009

The combination of the financial crisis and terrible memory market conditions has knocked out one of the world's top memory makers: Qimonda, which filed for insolvency today. According to Bloomberg, the German firm "sought protection from creditors after failing to secure sufficient financing following a slide in memory-chip prices this year."

Qimonda reportedly expected to receive a €325 million ($418 million) financing package from the German state of Saxony, majority stakeholder Infineon, and a Portuguese bank. However, Qimonda said the financing "couldn't be completed in time." The company now intends to reorganize itself within German law's insolvency regime.

Research firm iSuppli has chimed in with a few fun facts about what this event means for the industry. iSuppli notes that Qimonda accounted for 9.7% of global DRAM shipments in the third quarter of 2008, although its own production only made up about half of that. iSuppli's Nam Hyung Kim goes on to say, "For the full year of 2009, Qimonda's insolvency means global DRAM bit shipment growth now is expected to be less than the 30 percent level . . . This will reduce supply growth, helping to stabilize pricing, and helping to mitigate the oversupply-driven downturn."

Qimonda's woes may have their biggest repercussions in the graphics market. iSuppli says Qimonda chips made up a whopping 26% of global graphics DRAM shipments in Q3 '08.

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