Micron says near-term output safe from Ukraine supply hit, costs to rise

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The logo of U.S. memory chip maker MicronTechnology is pictured at their booth at an industrial fair in Frankfurt, Germany, July 14, 2015. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach/File Photo

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March 29 (Reuters) - Chipmaker Micron Technology Inc (MU.O) said it expects no impact on near-term production from component shortages driven by the Ukraine crisis, but costs are expected to rise.

Ukraine's two leading neon suppliers, which produce about half the world's supply of the key chip-making ingredient, have halted their operations, threatening to drive up prices and worsen an ongoing semiconductor crunch. read more

Global chip output was already under pressure after the pandemic drove up demand for cellphones, laptops and later cars, forcing some firms to scale back production.

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That same demand helped Micron forecast current-quarter revenue above estimates and deliver higher-than-expected results in the second quarter, sending shares up more than 4%.

"We currently do not expect any negative impacts to our near-term production volumes because of the Russia-Ukraine war, but we do expect an increase in our costs as we secure supply of certain raw materials that could be addressed," Chief Executive Officer Sanjay Mehrotra said in a post-earnings conference call.

Recent efforts to diversify supply and maintain inventories of raw materials and noble gases helped contain the blow, he added.

The impact from Ukraine-driven supply shortfalls will not show up until about seven to nine months later, when global raw material inventories run out, said Kinngai Chan, managing director - semiconductors at Summit Insights Group LLC.

Micron forecast current-quarter revenue of $8.7 billion, plus or minus $200 million, compared with analysts' average estimate of $8.06 billion, according to Refinitiv data.

Revenue rose 24.8% to $7.79 billion, beating estimates of $7.52 billion.

Micron also charged more for its NAND and DRAM memory chips, helping gross margins as a percentage of revenue rise to 47.2% from 26.4% last year.

Excluding items, net income was $2.14 per share, higher than estimates of $1.97.

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Reporting by Yuvraj Malik in Bengaluru, additional reporting by Jane Lanhee Lee in Oakland, California; Editing by Devika Syamnath

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