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SDK Establishes Specialty Gas Subsidiary in Singapore

February 22, 2001

Showa Denko K.K. (SDK) has established a new subsidiary in Singapore to supply semiconductor manufacturers in the region with specialty gases, scrubbers and waste gas regeneration services.

The new company Showa Specialty Gas Singapore Pte. Ltd. is capitalized at S$1 million (approx.¥65 million) and owned 80% by SDK and 20% by Showa Specialty Gas (Taiwan) Ltd., another specialty gas subsidiary set up earlier in Taiwan. Yoshihisa Teruoka, Chief Manager, High-performance Gases and Chemicals Department, Gases & Chemicals Division, has been appointed as President of the new company.

In Singapore, six companies operate a total of nine plants for processing semiconductors. As the Singaporean Government is promoting growth of the semiconductor industry, the numbers are expected to increase to nine companies and 17 plants by 2002. Furthermore, construction of three semiconductor-processing plants is being planned in Malaysia.

In addition to semiconductor plants in Singapore operated by subsidiaries of Japanese manufacturers, SDK recently received orders from foreign producers in the area for our specialty gases and scrubbers. To meet the demand and in anticipation of further growth in neighboring areas including Malaysia, SDK has established Showa Specialty Gas Singapore Pte. Ltd. The company is expected to have annual sales of ¥1 billion in 2005.

The semiconductor-processing specialty gases business is one of the core businesses of SDK under its medium-term consolidated business plan called "Cheetah Project." As Japanese semiconductor manufacturers shifted their production to Asian countries, SDK already established subsidiaries in Hsintsu, Taiwan in 1996 and in Shanghai, China, in 1999. The Taiwan subsidiary Showa Specialty Gas (Taiwan) Ltd. will start up its second plant in April this year in the Tainan district and its sales for 2001 will amount to ¥4 billion, double the figure for 2000.

Outline of SDK's Specialty Gases Business

As from the early days of semiconductor production in Japan, SDK has been serving the industry with high-quality specialty gases and scrubbers based on its expertise in organic and inorganic chemicals. SDK's sales in this area amounted to approx. ¥17 billion in 2000 and the figure for 2002 is expected to grow to ¥20 billion.

In 1996, SDK established a fluorine-based specialty gas plant in Kawasaki jointly with Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. of the United States. Furthermore, SDK acquired Asahi Glass Co., Ltd.'s specialty gas business in April 1999. As a result, SDK now has large shares of the semiconductor-processing specialty gas markets in Japan: approx. 40% for etching gases such as Cl2, BCl3 and CF4; 60% for C2F6 (as chamber cleaning gas); and 50% each for N2O (as CVD gas) and NH3 (as CVD gas and for blue-light-emitting LEDs).

With regard to scrubbers (trade name: Clean-SR®), SDK has already sold more than 10 thousand units. In 1999, SDK started selling Clean-S® PF for efficient decomposition and removal of waste perfluorocarbon gases that could facilitate global warming.

In addition, SDK is engaged in other related operations, including coating of facilities and piping (Clean-S treatment), generation of fluorine gas at customer sites (purity: close to 100%), high-purity organic solvents for rinsing (Solfine), and high-purity inorganic solvent for photoresist (TMAH).