Sunday, July 31, 2016

ASM news from 2Q 2016 Earnings call

The ASM International 2Q/2016 Earnings Call transcript with CEO Chuck Del Prado is now available online here. From Seeking Alpha. Here is the initial opening of the call:

Orders were mainly driven by our ALD business. Looking at our bookings, Logic/Foundry represented the largest segment in the second quarter, and showed a strong increase compared to the third quarter, driven by demand related to the 10-nanometer technology node. Orders in the logic sector decreased compared to the first quarter, while foundry orders strongly increased.

So, as now, looking at a little bit more detail to our ALD business, as mentioned earlier in this call, 10 millimeter investments in Logic/Foundry strongly supported our bookings during the quarter. Single-waiver ALD is a critical enabling technology for Logic and Foundry customers to make the transition to 10-nanometer. The next to high-k metal gate applications, more precise and conformal deposition is needed for several other critical process steps to build these advanced infrastructures. As we have mentioned before, the shrink to 10-nanometer results in the qualification of our single-wafer XP8 for low-temperature ALD patterning application in the Logic/Foundry segment.

A slide from the ASM presentation given at the SEMICON West ASM Technology seminar giving the details on the ALD application for metal oxide hard masks. (
In addition, we have developed new applications. As an example, such an innovative ALD application that we highlighted at our technology seminar, earlier this month at Semicon West is the usual ALD metal oxide hardmask in the 10-nanometer node.  [LINK]
This is just one example where ALD technology supports our customers in addressing the challenges of ever-smaller geometries in 3D device structures. Consequently, the number of ALD layers for 10-nanometer, for which we have been selected, has increased substantial compared to the 14/16 nanometer technology node, which we believe positions us well for a significant increase in the share of wallet with key customers in the Logic/Foundry segment. Longer-term, the introduction of new materials and architectures, such as [indiscernible] will further increase the ALD opportunity we believe in the Logic/Foundry sector.

In the memory market, our ALD equipment has supported key customers in the ramp of several technology generations. Multiple patterning continues to be a key enabler for customer in the DRAM sector in their move to the 1x technology node, especially with some of our most recent single-wafer ALD process and hardware innovations. We are well-positioned to serve these increased patterning requirements of our DRAM customers as soon as demand for capacity in this industry segment picks up. In NAND flash, customer investments are largely geared now towards 3D NAND. There is little need for multiple patterning single-wafer ALD capacity, which up until last year was a solid driver for us in Planar NAND.