Gartner: Stepper market shrunk in ’08, 2009 outlook “grim”

June 24, 2009 – Much has been said about capital equipment consolidation, particularly in recent months under the weight of the economic slowdown, but in one of the more concentrated sectors the growth was lousy in 2008 and looks to be twice as bad in 2009.

Rankings were unchanged in 2008 vs. 2007 among what has been pared down to three vendors: ASML, Nikon, and Canon. (Ultratech recorded no sales at all in ’08 after just $700K in 2007, with shipments reduced from one to none.) Total stepper sales fell -24.6% to $5.39B, while units shipped sunk -43% to 344 units.

Thanks to strong entrenchment at key customer Samsung and a general demand for 193nm DUV from the NAND flash sector, ASML more than doubled No.2 Nikon’s sales (who more than doubled Canon). ASML also shipped more than a third more tools than Canon and Nikon, noted Gartner managing VP Klaus Rinnen.

Looking into 2009, Gartner sees “a grim picture for the stepper market and its vendors,” with sales plunging -54%, which calculates to roughly $2.48B — barely a third of what they were just 24 months ago. And Rinnen projects just about 118 unit shipments in 2009, less than a quarter of what they were in 2007.

(Source: Gartner)


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