HIWIN Obtained NT$4.3 B. Syndicated Loans to Expand Output

Taipei, Oct. 12, 2006 (CENS)--HIWIN Technologies Corp., Taiwan`s largest manufacturer of linear mechanical transmission parts, recently obtained syndicated loans of NT$4.3 billion (US$130.3 million at US$1:NT$33) from 13 banks, including Bank of Taiwan, Land Bank of Taiwan and Medium Business Bank of Taiwan.

A total of 18 banks have offered NT$6.8 billion (US$206.06 million) in syndicated loans, but HIWIN eventually selected 13 from whom to borrow smaller-scale loans. HIWIN said it will use the funds to set up a global operational headquarters in Taiwan by investing NT$7.1 billion (US$215.15 million).

J.C. Shen, deputy director of the Industrial Development Bureau (IDB) under the Ministry of Economic Affairs, said the syndicated-loan project launched by Hiwin holds significance. He stressed that the domestic machinery industry saw an overall production value of NT$640 billion (US$19.39 million) last year and the amount will grow to NT$700 billion (US$21.21 million) this year, despite an economic slowdown.

Shen predicted the machinery industry will see its overall production value break the NT$1 trillion (US$30.3 billion) mark in 2009, trailing only the high-profile semiconductor and optoelectronics sectors.

To cope with and facilitate the remarkable growth of the machinery industry, the IDB has established a precision machinery industrial promotion committee to offer tax incentives, preferential loans, and train manpower.

HIWIN president and CEO Eric Y.T. Chuo said that his company has completed deploying global marketing points and is now engaged in a three-year expansion project. After finishing the expansion project, the company will see its annual sales break the NT$10 billion (US$303 million) mark to be the world`s third-largest manufacturer of linear transmission parts.

Currently HIWIN focuses on developing and producing ballscrews and linear guideways marketed globally with the in-house brand "Hiwin." The company has set up subsidiaries and R&D centers in the U.S., Japan, Germany, Switzerland, Czech Republic and Russia.

The HIWIN Group racked up NT$5 billion (US$151.51 million) in total sales last year, with its Taiwan operation posting sales of NT$2.748 billion (US$83.27 million), representing a year-on-year growth of 10.66%; while the earnings-per-share reached NT$3.08 (US$0.09).

HIWIN Technologies has generated NT$2.3 billion (US$69.69 million) in cumulative sales in the first nine months of this year, up 10% year-on-year. With fully-booked production lines, the sales from the Taiwan operation will undoubtedly reach the projected goal of NT$3.2 billion (US$96.96 million).

The company is working on filing to be listed on the Taiwan Stock Exchange sometime in the third quarter of next year. (by Ben)

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