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SunFab's end bodes ill for future of U.S. energy tech

George Leopold
7/21/2010 07:52 PM EDT

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chalacoperujb
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re: SunFab's end bodes ill for future of U.S. energy tech
chalacoperujb   7/25/2010 6:49:57 PM
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This is how applied materials kills a project and wasted 500 million dollars plus and no CEO will pay for the decision to get into the solar system. Regular USA employees will pay for this decision. Big business will dump more people into the unemployment line to make money for their big investors. Who will buy their products??? Keep on sending all the jobs to China and live with the consequences when China goes back to their communist ways.

unknown multiplier
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re: SunFab's end bodes ill for future of U.S. energy tech
unknown multiplier   7/25/2010 2:57:23 AM
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This is the latest example of Applied abandoning a new tech effort if it appears too much hassle.

pixies
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re: SunFab's end bodes ill for future of U.S. energy tech
pixies   7/23/2010 7:16:11 PM
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I grew up in Xi'an and the funny thing is the city is so polluted you can barely see the sun all year long. That aside, I agree with Rich, if it is more efficient to make solar panel in China, so be it. The whole world will benefit from it. It is called globalization - a more efficient configuration of resources on a global scale.

will99878898
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re: SunFab's end bodes ill for future of U.S. energy tech
will99878898   7/23/2010 12:14:46 AM
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good point, I feel this whole sunfab .. is just a plot to rid of some political factions within amat. many years ago, infineon put some of their enemies into a boat called qimonda then watch it sunk... same thing here.

george.leopold
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re: SunFab's end bodes ill for future of U.S. energy tech
george.leopold   7/23/2010 12:10:18 AM
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I don't disagree with the points you make. What concerns me is that Applied Materials is a key player in what is clearly a strategic market. With some patient capital and some good ideas, they should be able to succeed in making a renewable energy operation work here in the U.S., which means scaling it up over time.

RDB
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re: SunFab's end bodes ill for future of U.S. energy tech
RDB   7/22/2010 6:59:12 PM
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The failure of Sunfab as a business concept has more to do with a strategic failure than as a signal of weakness in the solar market. Here is the business concept: build a turnkey fab for a customer, use older technology of AMAT's choice, and the manufacturing customer then bears nearly all the risk. From a customer standpoint...why would I want to buy a fab where all my competitors could buy an identical one? And my supplier would likely help them avoid any issues I faced, i.e. they will probably be MORE cost efficient than my fab. The manufacturer then would know that, from the outset, they have no competitive cost advanatage or technology advantage over pretty much anyone. After all, if it works, anyone else could see their success, and copy it. It doesn't take a lot of game theory thought to realize the weakness of the strategy as a fab-building customer, and thus the weakness of the strategy as an equipment maker. The SunFab concept should have been killed at the inception stage. AMAT characterizing this a US-vs-China issue, or a picing uncertainty issue is a subterfuge to minimize criticism of a business strategy that was flawed from the outset. The board should be asking who was behind that decision...

will99878898
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re: SunFab's end bodes ill for future of U.S. energy tech
will99878898   7/22/2010 3:18:52 AM
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the truth should be applied with be competing with taiwan/china vendors on this front. It will not make a penny if it's R&D base is in US. If it moves to china, yeah, they are level now. It won't move it's litho line to xian, as long as it's competing with someone in Japan/europe.

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