© Micron SK hynix Samsung
Analysis |

Contract price increases boost DRAM Q1 revenue by 5.1%

TrendForce reveals that the DRAM industry experienced a 5.1% revenue increase in 1Q24 compared to the previous quarter.

This growth — reaching USD 18.35 billion — was driven by rising contract prices for mainstream products, with the price increase being more significant than in 4Q23. As a result, most companies in the industry continued to see revenue growth.

The top three suppliers experienced a decline in shipments in the first quarter, demonstrating the industry’s off-season effect. Additionally, downstream companies had higher inventory levels, which led to a significant reduction in procurement volume. As for ASP, the top three suppliers continued to benefit from contract price increases seen in 4Q23. With inventory levels still healthy, there was a strong intention to raise prices.

Mobile DRAM saw the highest price increase out of all applications thanks to strong sales of Chinese smartphones. On the other hand, the price increase for consumer DRAM was the lowest among all applications, as manufacturers still need to clear their inventories.

TrendForce highlights that even though consumer demand remains weak, the shipment volumes of major suppliers are expected to increase seasonally in the second quarter. Uncertainty surrounding the damage from the earthquake has led to a shift in purchasing attitudes. As a result, some PC OEMs have started to agree on sporadic transaction prices, with increases higher than TrendForce’s initial expectations. It’s estimated that final DRAM contract prices will rise by 13–18%.

Samsung’s revenue experienced a modest rise to USD 8.05 billion, marking a quarterly growth of just 1.3%. Despite this, its market share dipped by 1.6 percentage points to 43.9%. Nevertheless, Samsung retained its leading position in the market. The company’s strategy to increase ASP by around 20% successfully offset the mid-single-digit decline in shipment volume, showcasing a clear focus on prioritising price over volume.

SK hynix, ranked second, saw a slight revenue increase to USD 5.7 billion, with a quarterly growth of only 2.6%. Its market share declined by 0.7 percentage points to 31.1%. The ASP also rose by about 20%, offsetting the mid-single-digit decline in shipment volume and following a similar strategy to Samsung.

Micron’s revenue in the first quarter increased to USD 3.95 billion, achieving a significant quarterly growth of 17.8%. Its market share rose by 2.3 percentage points to 21.5% to secure the third position. The ASP increased by approximately 23%, while shipment volume only dropped by 4–5% — outperforming its top two competitors. This strong performance was driven by an aggressive pricing strategy and robust server DRAM shipments as Micron benefited from orders from major US clients.

For the second quarter, the top three manufacturers have forecast their shipment volumes as follows: Samsung expects a growth ranging from low to high single digits, SK hynix anticipates a mid-single-digit increase, while Micron predicts a slight decline.

For Taiwanese manufacturers, Nanya’s first-quarter shipment volume grew by a low single-digit percentage, driven by restocking momentum due to rising prices and a slower recovery in consumer DRAM sales. The ASP saw a high single-digit increase, resulting in a 10.5% revenue growth to $302 million.

In the first quarter, Winbond did not raise contract prices, yet due to customers’ preemptive stocking, its shipment performance was strong, driving a revenue increase of 21.6% to $162 million. As for PSMC, its revenue calculation mainly includes its own consumer DRAM products and excludes businesses from DRAM foundry.

Despite gradually recovering capacity utilisation, the first quarter saw a 28.2% decline in DRAM revenue to $28 million. This was due to a combination of shipping primarily low-priced DRAM products and fewer production and shipping days during the holiday season.

RankingCompanyRevenueMarket share
2SK hynix5,7035,5602.6%31.1%31.8%
1Q24 global DRAM manufacturers' branded memory revenue rankings

For more information visit TrendForce

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June 13 2024 1:49 pm V22.4.55-2