Samsung has announced that it will be investing a grand total of $7 billion into its NAND flash memory manufacturing operations in China over the next three years. The investments will go into refitting facilities, expanding plants, and hiring new workers. The focus will supposedly be on one particular plant in Xi’an, where the majority of Samsung's flash memory manufacturing in China will take place, according to a report from Bloomberg. The company did not detail how much of the $7 billion it's investing is going into that central plant, or how the money will be disbursed to its operations in the region over the three-year investment period.
Samsung's NAND flash operations in China have traditionally been among its largest worldwide but still dwarfed by its South Korean offerings. One area where its Chinese operations will excel in the near future, however, is in the production of 3D NAND flash memory, multi-layered units that can provide greater capacity and speed than current solutions in roughly the same amount of space. That is the main product of the aforementioned Xi'an NAND plant, where most of the money Samsung announced investing today will possibly be going. A large-scale increase in the production of 3D NAND flash memory by a player as large as Samsung could even result in market changes of the sort predicted for the near future in the OLED display panel space.
Samsung has long been one of the world's top players in the NAND flash market, and this move seeks to help it maintain that position on a global scale by diversifying operations. The company topped the market in the first quarter of the year, more than doubling the take of its competitor Toshiba. Samsung also currently holds 44 percent of the world's sales of DRAM, a subtype of NAND flash memory that is suitable for use as RAM in a number of devices ranging from smartphones to supercomputers. The company's operations are presently focused on its homeland of South Korea where it has multiple plants, including the one that is still being built, and will be the largest such facility in the world upon its completion.