Touch panel manufacturer Wintek suffered another blow in October as it reported a 20% year on year fall in sales for the month to NT$5.7 billion ($186.3 million). Sales for the first 10 months of the year were flat at NT$60.3 billion ($1.9 billion).
The company recently applied to a local court for financial restructuring and emergency injunction because of the high proportion of both short-term and long-term debt which it faces in China. Filing the restructuring application and injunction should grant the protection of Wintek’s assets and provide the company with time to overcome its financial difficulties. In September, Wintek secured an extension for the repayment of bank loans and said it was also looking for a new injection of capital to finance its business (Display Monitor Vol. 21 No 38). The company also said it would take steps to streamline its operations and boost manufacturing efficiency, as well as revitalising some of its under-used assets to improve its cash holdings.
As a result of its financial difficulties, Chinese customers have started to shift touch panel orders away from Wintek and towards competitors such as O-Film and TPK, say Asian sources. One of those seeking a new partner is Xiaomi, as Wintek has not been able to fulfil orders for the company’s Hongmi smartphone series. Wintek’s touch sensor supplier, Young Fast Optoelectronics, stopped supplying Wintek when the company discovered its financial situation.