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Fab equipment spending looking at three consecutive growth years

Paul van Gerven
Leestijd: 2 minuten

Fueled by surging pandemic-inspired demand for electronics devices, the global semiconductor industry is on track to register a rare three consecutive years of record highs in fab equipment spending, with a 16 percent increase in 2020 followed by forecast gains of 15.5 percent this year and 12 percent in 2022, Semi predicts in its quarterly World Fab Forecast report.

The semiconductor industry last saw three straight years of fab equipment investment growth in a run that started in 2016. It was nearly 20 years before that streak that the industry recorded an expansion of at least three years. In the mid-1990s, the chip industry boasted a four-year period of growth.

The bulk of fab investments in 2021 and 2022 will be seen in the foundry and the memory sectors. Driven by leading-edge investment, foundry spending is expected to grow 23 percent in 2021, reach 32 billion dollars and flatten in 2022. Overall memory spending will increase in the single digits to reach 28 billion dollars in 2021 while DRAM will surpass NAND flash, and then surge by 26 percent in 2022 on the strength of both DRAM and 3D NAND investments.

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