Challenges to Semiconductor Equipment Industry in China

Company news | 2018-12-27 14:27
The whole science and technology industry is an inverted pyramid, which can be divided into four levels, the top one is software network, the second one is single subsystem, the third one is chip manufacturing $400 billion, the fourth one is chip front-end equipment $30-40 billion, the total annual investment is more than $70 billion; on the contrary, there are millions of companies such as software network, hundreds of thousands of electronic systems companies, and only a few chip manufacturing companies. There are 100 companies, 25 major companies, 8 leading companies. There are only dozens of Companies in chip equipment, 10 major companies in the world and 3 leading companies in process equipment. Chip equipment needs 3-5 years to develop a new generation of products ahead of chip manufacturing. Chip manufacturing needs 5-7 years to develop electronic systems ahead of time.
In the mature stage of semiconductor industry, because of too many competitors, the price war between supply and demand has led to a substantial reduction in prices. As the final product enters every household, it must be of good quality and low price, so the cost of the product becomes the most important factor to promote the development of the industry. Often only the first company to make a new product can make enough profits.
Semiconductor equipment industry volatility is very large, directly affected by the semiconductor industry capital expenditure. The actual performance of the equipment market is often contrary to market forecasts.
The industry competition is very fierce. After 30 years of development, more than 30 initial etching and film equipment companies are now concentrated in three micro-second plants. After the completion of the second phase, they will reach 400-500 equipments per year and the development capacity of 8-10 billion RMB. The company has more than 100 semiconductor equipment experts from more than ten countries, and more than a dozen VPs from six countries.
In the first three years, the number of on-line etchers increased by more than 30% annually. 409 etchers and MOCVD have been used in 34 advanced production lines in Asia, and the number of on-line etchers has increased by 40% annually on average from 12 to 15 years. At present, the main wafers are 40nm, 45nm and 28nm, and the wafers below 28nm are more than 300,000 wafers per month, while the wafers of MEMS and CIS are more than 80,000 wafers per month.