Showa Denko K.K. to Produce up to 15.75 Million Hard Disks a Month

Showa Denko K.K. (SDK) has decided to increase its hard disk (HD) media production capacity to 15.75 million disks per month, up 2 million disks per month, by the end of this year through construction of new lines at its Taiwan subsidiary Showa Denko HD Trace Corporation and debottlenecking at other production sites. Total investment will amount to 8 billion yen.

The decision reflects increasing demand for HD drives for installation in notebook PCs and digital electric appliances, including mobile music players. Despite the expansion by 3.05 million disks per month, to 13.75 million disks per month, completed in April this year, SDK still cannot accept all orders from customers.

SDK is now building a new world-scale HD media plant in Singapore to meet growing demand, centering on consumer electronics applications. The plant, scheduled for completion in November 2006, will start commercial production in the first quarter of 2007. Production lines will be added step by step.

As a result of the construction of the new plant in Singapore and the 2 million disks-per-month expansion announced this time, SDK will have increased its total capacity to 24 million disks per month by the end of 2008.

SDK is the largest independent HD media supplier in the world. Under the ongoing medium-term consolidated business plan, the Passion Project, SDK is promoting its HD media operation as a “growth-driver” business, planning to invest a total of 90 billion yen in the three years until the end of 2008.

About Showa Denko K.K.
Showa Denko, ‘SDK’ (TSE: 4004)(US: SHWDF) is a major manufacturer and marketer of chemical products serving a wide range of fields ranging from heavy industry to the electronic and computer industries. SDK makes petrochemicals (ethylene, propylene), aluminum products (ingots, rods) electronic equipment (hard disks for computers), and inorganic materials (ceramics, carbons). The company has overseas operations and a joint venture with Netherlands-based Montell and Nippon Petrochemicals to make and market polypropylenes. In March 2001, SDK merged with Showa Denko Aluminum Corporation to strengthen the high-value-added fabricated aluminum products operations, and is today developing next-generation optical communications-use wafers.