AMD ramped up Fab 36 too slowly?


— 4:58 PM on April 13, 2006

An analyst quoted by EE Times is claiming that AMD ramped its new Fab 36 slower than previously anticipated. The analyst points to AMD's depreciation guidance, which is projected to be $38.5 million higher in the middle of the year than what the company claimed.

"We believe that this means AMD ramped Fab 36 slower than expected and that this will be viewed in one of two ways. Either the ramp has gone slowly as a result of poor execution ... or management was being conservative in previous guidance by giving a large depreciation number, and after the fab began producing mature yields at a quick pace, demand did not warrant further equipment start-up until later in the year," he said.

"The later seems more plausible as the full-year depreciation guidance remained unchanged, and further equipment purchases will be made in the back half of the year," he added.

Yesterday, AMD reported great first quarter results, but said second quarter sales would be "flat to slightly down" from the start of the year. The company did make a big announcement about its first revenue shipments from Fab 36, though, saying it had ramped volume production at Fab 36 "in record time, hitting every major milestone on schedule and beginning production at mature yields."
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