SAN FRANCISCOŚWorldwide sales of new semiconductor manufacturing equipment are set to grow 4.7 percent in 2011, but forecast to decrease by roughly 10.8 percent next year before returning to growth in 2013, according to the fab tool vendor trade group SEMI.
SEMI (San Jose, Calif.) projects that sales of new semiconductor equipment will reach $41.8 billion in 2011, following a 151 percent market increase in 2011. Equipment revenues of $41.8 billion are roughly equivalent with 2007 investment levels, SEMI said during the annual Semicon Japan exposition near Tokyo.
"Given the exceptional growth in the market from 2009 to 2010, the lower growth rate in 2011 is expected, not surprising," said Denny McGuirk, SEMI's president and CEO, in a statement. "The industry experiences highly cyclical markets, with the rebound likely to occur in 2013."
Wafer processing equipment, the largest product segment by dollar value, is expected to increase 9.3 percent in 2011 to almost $32.7 billion, SEMI said. The forecast predicts that the market for assembly and packaging equipment will decline by 12.5 percent to $3.4 billion in 2011. The market for semiconductor test equipment is forecasted to decline by 10.3 percent, reaching $3.7 billion this year, according to the forecast.
Growth is expected in four regions in 2011Ś Europe (66.9 percent increase over 2010), North America (53.0 percent), Japan (31.2 percent), and China (2.3 percent), SEMI said. In 2011, North America will be the largest market for equipment with sales of $8.8 billion, followed by Taiwan ($8.1 billion), South Korea ($8 billion) and Japan ($5.8 billion), SEMI said. Taiwan, South Korea, and the Rest of World region experienced contraction of sales this year, SEMI said.
In 2012, only South Korea is expected to have positive growth (7.5 percent). In 2013, the market is expected to rebound for all regions except South Korea, due to high growth in 2012, SEMI said.
Keep in mind that the consensus forecast is a SURVEY. This forecast is in-line with most other predicitons. They also have other reports which were right on. They were first predicting a double digit decline for 2008. They were first prediciting an increase of more than 90% for 2010. The "wild card" for 2012 are Samsung (mainly), and maybe TSMC, Intel and Hynix.