Friday, April 22, 2016

All about ALD - ASM Internationals Q1 2016 Earnings Conference Call

ASMi reports that Gartner and VLSI have recently estimated that the ALD market grew in excess of 20% in 2015. That makes ALD among the fastest-growing market segments within the wafer equipment market. ASMi is bthe leader in terms of the broad number of applications and market share in ALD. However, as reported earlier ASM sees a risk for a market share loss in the booming ALD market from strong competition. This is understandable since the ALD market is projected to double in the next 3-4 years for single and multi wafer tools while Large Batch Furnace ALD will grow at a lower pace.  However, for the 2016 calendar year ASMi expect a market share in ALD higher than in 2015.


ASM International N.V.  Q1 2016 Earnings Conference Call April 21, 2016 9:00 AM ET

The ASMi Earnings call was All About ALD and here are some statements from ASMi CEO Chuck del Parado made during the 1Q 2016 call investor today taken from the transcripts of the Q1 2016 Earnings Conference Call April 21, 2016 9:00 AM ET provided by Seeking Alpha (available here

Also good to have a look at is the Investor presentation for 1Q 2016 available here.

General

  • The ALD business continued to be the key revenue driver. By customer segment, revenue in the quarter was led by memory, still building on the strengths in 2015, followed by logic and foundry.
  • The market for single-wafer/mini-batch ALD remains on track with our forecast to double over three to four-year period. And that that is from more than US$600 million in 2014 to, at least, US$1.2 billion by the 2017/2018 timeframe [as a reference point the total deposition (PVD, CVD, ALD) market share was ~8 billion in 2015]
  • In summary, the prospects for ALD market in the coming years continue to be strong. And as a market leader, we believe we are well-positioned to benefit.

Logic Foundry

  • the biggest driver for single wafer ALD in 2016 could very well be logic/foundry. And if that really becomes true then likely our market share will increase in 2016. 
  • Logic represented the largest segment in the first quarter, and showed a strong increase compared to the fourth quarter, driven by demand related to the 10-nanometer technology node
  • the High-k Metal Gate applications, customers require more precise and formal deposition for several critical steps, such as for certain spacers and liners to build these advanced and complex infrastructures. In addition, the shrink to 10-nanometer also drives demand for multiple patterning, with more of the critical patterning steps 10-nanometer requiring spacer-defined multiple patterning based on single wafer ALD.
  • In total, the number of ALD layers were 10-nanometer, for which we have been selected has increased substantially compared to the previous technology node. As customers have started to make the first investments in the volume ramp of 10-nanometer, our confidence has strengthened that with the continued solid and leading market share, we are well-positioned for a significant increase in a share of wallet with key customers in the logic, foundry segment.

Memory

  • In the memory market, we already have a strong track record in multiple patterning, where our ALD equipment has supported key customers in the ramp of several technology generations. Multiple patterning continues to be a key enabler for customers in the DRAM sector. At the next technology node, the 1x node, the number of layers that require ALD-based multiple patterning will further increase.
  • The memory sector, which let our bookings in the last six quarters, represented the second largest segment in the first quarter, roughly on par with the foundry segment
  • In NAND flash, customer investments are increasingly geared towards 3D NAND. As we explained in previous calls, ALD-based patterning requirements are substantially less in 3D NAND compared to Planar NAND. At the same time, we are strongly focused on long patterning applications in 3D NAND and we expected these applications will increasingly contribute to our revenue in the second-half of 2016 and going into 2017.

EUV

  • EUV could best case hit the market at 7, but if it hits the market, we – the overall expectation from everybody is that the impact will be limited, if at all, at 7-nanometer, and that – a stronger influence could happen at 5-nanometer.