90%+ utilization rates at LED makers in Taiwan: A short-term phenomenon

May 29, 2012 — Reporting from Barclays Capital’s BarCap 2012 Global TMT Conference, the company’s analysts say that the light emitting diode (LED) industry remains in oversupply, and 90%+ utilization rates being reported in Taiwan’s LED fabs are a short-lived event.

However, the LED industry is increasingly confident that supply and demand are becoming more balanced from the end of 2012 onward. Lighting demand growth will start in 2013, driving more equipment bookings from Q3 2012 onward. NPD Displaysearch’s latest report supports this point of view: "After a surge in 2010 and oversupply in 2011 that suppressed 2012 fab, LED makers will see a leveling out of supply and demand into better equilibrium."

For now, demand for metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) tools remains weak, Barclays reports. “While the precise timeline of an order recovery is still hard to pinpoint, both Veeco and Aixtron expressed confidence in an order recovery in 2013 at the latest,” the analysts report. Total MOCVD tool shipments will gradually recover from the 2012 trough levels of ~300 tools to a more normalized level of ~520 tools per year.

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