- 22 Jul 2010:Applied Materials has announced it will stop new sales of its "turnkey" SunFab thin-film solar manufacturing line and concentrate on silicon solar and LED lighting. The restructuring of its Energy and Environmental Solutions business will lead to the elimination of 400-500 positions and a third-quarter charge between US$375-425 million.
- 19 Jul 2010:Applied Materials "has not made a dent in the mask shop," said Brian Trafas, chief marketing officer at KLA-Tencor. "They have a few systems in the fab, but it's a small share."
- 14 Jul 2010:KLA-Tencor has increased its regular quarterly dividend to US$0.25 a share from US$0.15. "KLA-Tencor's strong cash flows and solid balance sheet provide us the financial flexibility to return significant cash to our shareholders while also providing the capacity to fuel our growth initiatives," said CEO Rick Wallace.
- At an analyst briefing at the Semicon West trade show, Applied Materials indicated that it now expects 140% on-year revenue growth for its semiconductor equipment business for the October 2010 fiscal year, an increase from the company's previous forecast of 120% growth.
- 13 Jul 2010:Novellus Systems posted quarterly results above expectations, helped by a surge in bookings and shipments. The chip-gear maker has reported net profits of US$63.3 million for the second quarter compared with losses of US$50 million a year ago.
- 8 Jun 2010:At the beginning of this year, it was clear that only a few companies would spend more than US$1 billion each in 2010. This has suddenly changed: some companies have announced record levels of capex plans.
- 26 May 2010:Aixtron and Veeco dominate what's known as the MOCVD market for LED applications and have been seeing strong demand amid increasing display sales for items such as TVs. But some investors have worried demand and bookings could soon weaken as the LED market sees excess supply.
- 20 May 2010:"Applied's stronger second quarter results were led by revenues and profitability gains in our silicon and FPD businesses," said Mike Splinter, chairman and CEO of Applied Materials. "Global demand for computing and consumer electronics is giving our customers the confidence to make significant capacity additions, fueling what we believe will be a multiyear growth cycle..."
- 6 May 2010:TSMC, working with ASML and Mapper, have developed a prototype multi-e-beam tool for semiconductor lithography, according to company CTO Jack Sun speaking to the International Electronics Forum 2010 in Dresden.
- 25 Apr 2010:Lithography light source vendor Cymer swung to net profits of US$16 million in the first quarter of 2010 compared to losses of US$11.5 million a year earlier.
- 16 Apr 2010:"The trouble is that you can't get tools (from ASML). The lead times have extended..."
- 14 Apr 2010:"We booked one billion euro worth of orders in the first quarter of 2010 and expect a similar level of bookings in the second quarter," said ASML CEO Eric Meurice.
- Pinto is the first CTO to actually relocate to China, which in itself is a watershed event, but also shows how important China is to Applied Materials and the changing landscape of technology investing.
- Applied Materials has opened its new Singapore Operations Center, Applied's first facility in Asia for manufacturing its advanced semiconductor equipment.
- 9 Apr 2010:Nanda Technologies has raised US$4 million from Capital-E and KfW working alongside existing shareholders. The company said it will use the money to support pre-production evaluations at semiconductor manufacturers.
- 30 Mar 2010:Applied Materials has a balance sheet that can support additional acquisitions, some potentially larger than its US$364 million purchase of Semitool last year, CEO Mike Splinter said in an interview ahead of the company's annual meeting with analysts Tuesday.
- 25 Mar 2010:The largest semiconductor companies will need to shoulder much of the burden for the expensive R&D projects facing the chip industry, including the development of 450mm equipment and the inspection tools needed for EUV masks, said Dan Armbrust, the new CEO at Sematech.
- 16 Mar 2010:Applied Materials topped the list of semiconductor equipment vendors for the eighteenth consecutive year in 2009, a year in which mere survival was noteworthy amid a painful recession and steep industry downturn, according to VLSI Research.
- Applied Materials has ramped up its lobbying effort during the last three months of 2009, spending close to a half-million dollars trying to sway lawmakers on energy policy and other issues.
- 26 Feb 2010:Applied Materials CFO George Davis recently remarked there is reason to think the second half will see orders from Tier 2 DRAM players, and from some additional segments of the market, in particular NAND flash.
- 19 Feb 2010:The strong start prompted Applied Materials to brighten its outlook for the fiscal 2010. The company expects its sales to increase by more than 50%, up from its previous forecast of a 30% gain.
- 5 Feb 2010:Prosecutors have arrested two executives from Applied Materials in Seoul, South Korea on charges of allegedly stealing Samsung process technology details and passing them on to Hynix.
- 25 Jan 2010:"These comments beg the question how will the equipment market grow 50-plus-percent in 2010 with no new fabs and no new capacity additions, when it dropped nearly 50% in 2009 with no new fabs and no new capacity additions?"
- China's Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment Inc. (AMEC) also made a payment to Applied Materials of an undisclosed amount, and the parties agreed to collaborate on projects in the future.
- 23 Jan 2010:450mm production fabs could be pushed out to 2015 or 2016 - or two years later than some had hoped, according to analysts. And EUV may miss the insertion into the 16nm node, thereby pushing the technology out to the 13nm logic node in 2015.
- 20 Jan 2010:We closed the year as planned with improved sales and strong bookings, as the semiconductor business recovers driven by technology and capacity buys from major Foundry customers and the memory market segments, according to ASML president and CEO Eric Meurice.
- 19 Jan 2010:STMicroelectronics has joined the new industry/research multi-partner program IMAGINE, led by CEA-Leti, which includes TSMC, for mask-less lithography for IC manufacturing.
- The world's largest maker of semiconductor lithography machines, which map out electronic circuits on silicon wafers, was forecast to report a further rise in bookings from the third quarter, driven by consumer spending on end products.
- 18 Jan 2010:Vacuum technology firm Edwards is to cut 220 jobs in Sussex as it locates all its manufacturing operations overseas. The move marks a shift in strategy for the Crawley-headquartered company that had previously trumpeted its strong UK manufacturing base, which dates back to 1919.
- 14 Jan 2010:Vendors were hit hard by the downturn. 2010 looks better, but fab tool makers still face a number of challenges.
- 13 Jan 2010:"We didn't buy immersion from Nikon according the filing. We still buy from ASML...
- Having recently completed the acquisition of Singapore's Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing, Globalfoundries is expected to launch the new, combined entity this week.
- 9 Jan 2010:Answer: Yes and no.
- 5 Jan 2010:Citing the fab tool recovery, Barclays Capital has raised its immersion lithography unit shipment estimate from 95 units to 105 units for 2010.
- 11 Dec 2009:The Korean government and private sector will jointly inject 58.4 billion won (US$50.5 million) over the next three years into building up the local semiconductor manufacturing equipment sector, according to government officials.
- The sector's recovery depends on what happens at the global climate change summit taking place in Copenhagen and incentives for the renewable resource in China, according to Mark Pinto, CTO and general manager of Applied's Energy and Environmental Solutions group.
- 4 Dec 2009:This project seeks to optimize the patterning process from design to manufacturing, extend characterization tools and methods to develop new correction and compensation techniques for reducing variability. The project will also explore lithography options for manufacturing complex chips at sub-30nm nodes.
- 26 Nov 2009:EUV lithography stakeholders chip away at mask infrastructure problem (Nov 25) - Semiconductor InternationalThe consensus is that availability of defect-free masks and, perhaps more importantly, a lack of funding for an infrastructure that can inspect those masks, is the most critical issue faced today by EUV lithography development. But working groups are making progress defining - and funding - the solution.
- 23 Nov 2009:Loss-making foundry Tower Semiconductor, which trades as TowerJazz, has announced it plans to transfer "manufacturing know-how and certain equipment" to support an un-named Asian company ramp up production.
- 20 Nov 2009:Angry workers at Atmel's fab in Rousset, France, have gone on an unlimited strike. The strike aims to protest against Atmel's decision to sell its site in Rousset without guaranteeing its employees.
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