Mr. Takehiro Kamigama
Executive Vice President
Data Storage & Thin Film Technology Components Business Group
The following is a brief discussion of the operations of TDK's head business.
At the previous information meeting that covered first-half results, I announced a sales forecast of ¥119.0 billion for the second half of the fiscal year. At this time, I am revising this forecast to ¥126.6 billion, the sum of third-quarter sales of ¥65.3 billion and estimated fourth-quarter sales of ¥61.3 billion. As a result, we are now forecasting fiscal year sales of ¥229.9 billion compared with the previous forecast of ¥222.3 billion.
My next subject is total demand for HDD heads and TDK's market share. At the previous information meeting, I stated that total HDD head demand would be 301 million units. Now, we are raising this forecast slightly to 313 million units. Since the average number of heads per drive is flat at 2.6, we expect to increase our prior HGA demand forecast to 818 million units. We therefore expect a market share of 31%, the same as our previous forecast, even though TDK's HDD head sales volume will increase.
The final subject is our schedule for introducing new HDD heads. We have just started mass production largely as planned of heads for 120GB/P products with 3.5-inch platter capacity for desktop computers. However, there will be a significant delay in the launch of 160GB/P products. At the previous information meeting, I said that we expected to begin production of these products in June or July of this year. It now appears that the launch will occur about six months later at all HDD manufacturers. Previously, each company was using its own technology regarding 160GB/P products. But since companies are currently settling on a single technological approach, I believe that we can now formulate a reliable outlook for these heads. Accordingly, I think that, from a technological standpoint, we will be in a position to start mass production of 160GB/P products either late this year or early in 2006. Since we are now mass producing 50GB/P products for 2.5-inch drives, we have been able to start pre-production largely on schedule of TMR heads for 60GB/P products. So generally speaking, you can consider that our 60GB/P program is on schedule.
This completes my brief report on HDD head operations.