LCD panel firm HannStar Display plans to expand its capex for 2018 to between NT$3 billion (US$102.2 million) and NT$4 billion from the NT$1.9 billion spent a year earlier, with the bulk of the new budget to be used mostly for facility and product upgrades, according to company sources.
Utilizing new exposure machines and other machinery that have higher resolutions and accuracy rates, the company plans to upgrade the resolutions of its panels from HD to HD+, FHD and other specifications, said the sources.
The facility upgrades are expected to complete in May, which will be in time for the company to meet an upsurge in demand that normally comes in the traditional peak season in the second quarter, noted the sources.
The company saw its consolidated revenues slide 28.6% on year to NT$4.443 billion in the first quarter of 2018, reflecting off-peak seasonal effects and production slowdown caused by facility overhauls.
While aiming to ramp up the ratio of all-screen displays for handsets in 2018, HannStar expects sales of small- and medium-size panels to the handset industry to decline to 50-60% of its total revenues in the year, down from 60-70% in 2017.
Meanwhile, the company also looks to hike the ratio of automotive and industrial control-use panels to 20% of its total sales in 2018 compared to 10% a year ago.