Benq (formerly Acer Communications & Multimedia, ACM) has set a full-year target of 20 million units for total output of optical disc drives in 2002, said Wang Wei, vice-president of Benq. If the company reaches this target, output will grow 66.7% year-on-year.
In the fourth quarter of 2001, monthly output climbed to 1.3 million units. Wang claimed Benq will maintain this amount of business through the first half of 2002. Following the projected increase in CD-RW drive shipments in the second half, monthly output should go up to two million units.
Wang said Benq shipped 5.5 million CD-ROM, three million DVD-ROM and 3.5 million CD-RW drives in 2001. CD-ROM shipments in 2002 should stay about the same, but DVD-ROM and CD-RW drive shipments are expected to grow to six million and seven million units.
Benq will increase production of DVD-ROM drives for OEM orders in 2002. Hence, the ratio of OEM and own-brand production will go from 45/55 in 2001 to 50/50 in 2002.
Own-brand development is a top priority for 2002, but due to intense competition in DVD-ROM drives, Benq has opted for increased OEM production.
Benq will begin volume production of its new DVD-ROM/CD-RW combo drive and 40x speed CD-RW drive in February and March, respectively. It already began volume production of 32x speed CD-RW drives in December.