ROHM Semiconductor invests $1.35 billion to develop automotive electronics
According to an interview with the new president of ROHM Semiconductor, Tadanobu Fujiwara, the future development direction of ROHM will be transferred from the semiconductor and electronic components for home appliances to automotive applications. In the recent interview, he was also clearly pointed out that ROHM will invest 13.5 in the next three years for the automotive electronics market. He also revealed that a special organization was established in June to promote outward mergers and acquisitions.
In ROHM's 2017 annual revenue, home appliance-related products accounted for 56% of total revenue, while automotive were only 32%. In terms of regions, domestic transactions accounted for 62% of total revenue and overseas sales of 38%. In view of the year-on-year decline in Japan's population and the saturation of the home appliance market, ROHM has previously believed that future revenue sources must be adjusted according to trends.
ROHM's new investment projects in the automotive market including key components of electric vehicles (EVs), such as the switching components used in motors, namely transistors, will getting smaller in future. In addition, SiC power semiconductors that make the transformer components of electric vehicles smaller and smaller will continue to be invested. In terms of autonomous driving, ROHM also cooperates with autopilot sensor-related manufacturers to develop automotive ultrasonic sensors, which will increase the sensitivity to 6-8 times that of existing similar products. In addition, power components for the development of self-driving radars will be developed as well. The above-mentioned vehicle-related research and development is expected to launch new products in about 2021.
In addition, according to Japanese media Nikkan, Roma will invest more than 270 million US dollars in 2021 to increase the production capacity of products such as transistors and diodes. It is expected that the production capacity will increase by 30%. In addition, ROHM's SiC power semiconductors and industrial equipment, IoT-related products, are all invested in overseas markets, ROHM hopes to increase its overseas revenue from 38% to over 50%.