Samsung enters cryptocurrency mining race; starts making ASIC chips for mining

Analysts expect the firm's full-year operating profit to rise beyond 60 trillion won this year, again boosted by its semiconductor business.

During the company's Q4 2017 financial results, where it was announced that Samsung beat Intel to become the leading semiconductor manufacturing business in the world, it was also revealed that the company would start mass producing chipsets that would be strictly created to mine. It also surprised many on Wall Street as Samsung has ignored calls from investors to split their shares. "We expect to take second place in the foundry market this year after Taiwan's TSMC".

The South Korean multinational electronics company, Samsung Electronics has revealed that it has ventured into the mass production of cryptocurrency mining chips.

Operating profit came to 15.15 trillion won in the fourth quarter, up 64.3 percent won from a year earlier, Samsung Electronics said, in line with the indication it issued earlier in January.

The executive also added that Samsung's display business "will not be affected much a certain customer".

Its shares also jumped almost nine per cent after the company revealed that it was splitting its stock 50-to-1.

Samsung has confirmed it is now manufacturing bitcoin mining chips after reports to that effect surfaced this week.

The outlook for Samsung's smartphones is uncertain amid competition from Chinese rivals in markets like Europe and Asia, with the mobile division expected to show shipment growth of about 1-2 percent in 2018 versus 2017, said Tom Kang, research director at data provider Counterpoint.

Samsung has begun manufacturing the chips used in cryptocurrency mining.

As well as becoming the world's most prolific chip manufacturer, Samsung is forecasting high demand for its upcoming Galaxy S9 flagship smartphone, due to be unveiled at the end of February.

Samsung's display business, which supplies Apple with OLED screens, reported a 1.4 trillion won profit in the fourth quarter, up 5 percent from the same period a year ago.

  • Fernando Stephens