Taipei, July 27 (CNA) Hon Hai Group, also known as Foxconn Technology Group, has started recruiting new workers for its Shenzhen production complex, one of the sites where it assembles iPhones and iPads for Apple Inc., sources in the Apple supply chain said Saturday.
The sources said Hon Hai, the world's largest contract electronics maker, needs additional staff to deal with large orders from Apple for a new version of the iPhone.
The company will require as many as 90,000 new employees at its Shenzhen complex in Guangdong Province to fill the massive orders from Apple, the sources said.
Hon Hai has completed testing for the assembly of the new iPhone and is well prepared to begin production, according to the source.
Asked to comment on the report, the company said it does not discuss individual clients, but added that it normally adjusts its workforce to meet demand, when necessary.
Apart from Shenzhen, Hon Hai's production plants for Apple products are located in other Chinese cities such as Zhengzhou in Henan Province, Taiyuan in Shanxi Province, and Chengdu in Sichuan Province.
Earlier this month, the Chinese media reported the Hon Hai's Zhengzhou plant, which makes iPhones and iPads, had launched a recruitment drive. Hon Hai declined to confirm the report, but there were speculations in the market that the recruitment drive was in preparation for Apple's release of new products in the third quarter of the year.
On July 23, Apple reported net profit of US$6.90 billion, or US$7.47 in earning per share, (EPS), for the second quarter. While the EPS was down by an annual 22 percent, it topped the average market estimate of US$7.31.
In the second quarter of this year, Apple sold 31.20 million iPhones, higher than the 26 million to 27 million units estimated by the market, and 14.60 million iPads, well short of the market estimate of around 18 million units.
After the release of Apple's better-than-expected results, buying in so-called "Apple concept stocks" like Hon Hai escalated the next day on the Taiwan Stock Exchange.
Market analysts said Apple orders are expected to account for about 40 percent of Hon Hai's total sales for 2013, and 20-25 percent of the Taiwanese company's revenue for the year.
Driven by the launch of new iPhones and iPads, Hon Hai's sales growth momentum is expected to accelerate in the second half of this year and become more evident in the fourth quarter due to the peak season effects, analysts said.
In the first six months of this year, Hon Hai's consolidated sales stood at NT$1.71 trillion (US$57 billion), down 9.9 percent from a year earlier. Its consolidated sales for the second quarter, however, rose 10.9 percent from the first quarter to NT$896.87 billion.
On Friday, shares of Hon Hai fell 0.38 percent to close at NT$78.90 on the main board.
(By Jalen Chung and Frances Huang)