SEOUL, Jan. 29 (Yonhap) — SK hynix Inc., South Korea’s No. 2 chipmaker, on Friday reported robust fourth-quarter earnings on strong mobile chip demand amid the pandemic.

The chipmaker reported a net income of 1.76 trillion won (US$1.6 billion) during the October-December period, turning from a loss of 125.6 billion won a year earlier.

The world’s second-largest DRAM producer said its fourth-quarter operating profit more than quintupled to 965.9 billion won from a year ago. Revenue increased 15 percent on-year to 7.96 trillion won.

“Despite the decreased revenue due to the falling prices and the weak dollar, the company achieved an operating profit of 298 percent on-year by actively responding to the strong mobile demand from the third quarter,” SK hynix said.

This photo taken Oct. 20, 2020, shows the corporate logo of SK hynix Inc. at its plant in Icheon, 80 km south of Seoul. (Yonhap)

For 2020, the company reported net profit of 4.75 trillion won, up 136.9 percent from a year earlier.

Its operating profit stood at 5.01 trillion won last year, compared with 2.71 trillion won from the previous year. Annual sales rose 18.2 percent to 31.9 trillion won.

“Due to the global pandemic and the intensifying trade disputes last year, the memory market showed a sluggish trend,” said Noh Jong-won, head of the corporate center at SK hynix. “The company expanded its server market share based on its quality competitiveness, which resulted in an increase in the revenue and the operating profit by 18 percent and 84 percent, respectively, compared with the previous year.”

For this year’s DRAM market, SK hynix projected that demand for server products will increase due to investment of new data centers by global companies.

For the NAND flash market, the company estimated that the market trend will begin recovering in the second half of this year, adding that high inventory levels across the ecosystem will be resolved during the first half.

Meanwhile, SK hynix announced a per-share dividend of 1,170 won.

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