By Lara Chamness, Industry Research and Statistics, SEMI
As the fabless business model has transformed the semiconductor manufacturing landscape, Taiwan and South Korea have undeniably grown into key semiconductor producing regions. However, it should be noted that North America is home to Intel, Texas Instruments, Micron, GLOBALFOUNDRIES, Freescale, Fairchild, Microchip, ON Semiconductor, significant operations of Samsung, and other manufacturers. As a result, North America accounts for 15 percent (without discretes) of the global total installed fab capacity in 2014 according to the SEMI Fab database.
Due to the presence of leading device manufacturers, North America represents a significant portion of the new equipment market; for the last two years, North America was the second largest market for semiconductor manufacturing equipment. In 2011, North America was the largest market for new equipment. While spending is expected to decline in the region this year, it is anticipated that device manufacturers in North America will still spend about $7 billion on new equipment this year.
With such a large installed fab base, North America also claims a significant portion of the wafer fab materials market. Comparing global fab capacity to global wafer fab market share, North America represents 18 percent of the Wafer Fab Materials market compared to 15 percent of global fab capacity. This is due to the advanced device manufacturing that occurs in the region, which requires more advanced materials which fetch higher average selling prices. The same phenomenon occurs in Taiwan and Europe as well.
Even though the equipment market is expected to decline in North America this year, the Wafer Fab Materials Market is expected to increase amodest 3 percent. This is due to equipment purchased and installed last year becoming operational. The semiconductor manufacturing market in North America is still very much alive and innovating, whether it be for advanced manufacturing or chip design, companies in North America have proven adept at evolving with the industry.