Point Engineering, a leading South Korean maker of displays and semiconductor parts and materials, is poised to sign deals with global chip equipment makers next year, according to company officials.
With the move, the company hopes to diversify its portfolio that’s currently geared towards displays.
are on the verge of attaining approval for a qualification test from a globally renowned semiconductor equipment maker to begin supplying in the latter half of this year,” a Point Engineering official told The Elec.
The firm currently supplies parts for Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) procedures to California-based Applied Materials (AMAT), the largest maker of semiconductor chip equipment and services.
Should the deal go through, it should be a cinch for Point Engineering to increase its chip sector revenues to 30% of its total sales, according to industry watchers. The firm is targeting 50 billion won of revenues from semiconductors and 100 billion won from displays next year.
This would be a turnaround from last year when displays accounted for 90%.
Point Engineering’s portfolio is also heavily dependent on AMAT, with nearly 80% or 45.1 billion won ($37.9 million) of an aggregate 57.2 billion won derived from selling CVD equipment to the US firm.
“It’s true that a lot of people think that as panels grow bigger, the CVD equipment market for OLED displays will expand, but we do believe there could be a limit to such growth,” said the Point Engineering official.
“On the other hand, we believe the semiconductor market has the potential to be 5 times that of displays.”
With such forecasts in mind, the company has been looking to supply more parts and materials for semiconductors. R&D in this sector began in 2014.
Consequently, in the first half of this year, Point Engineering began supplying chip faceplates to AMAT in the first half of this year. Annual capacity is around 11,000 units, with revenues estimated at 40-50 billion won.
The faceplate prices are about double that of Point Engineering’s peers, but the firm explained this is because its products have longer lifespans.
Point Engineering’s partnership with AMAT goes back to 2014. It supplied everything from processing to precision analysis, along with materials including shadow frames and diffusers. These are also about 20% more expensive than the market price, but also last about 50% longer.
Point Engineering was established in 1998. The incumbent CEO Ahn Beom-mo, named in 2003, came from AMAT Korea.
Last year, the firm’s revenues reached 57.2 billion won, while operating profit stood at 13.6 billion won. It was listed on the Konex in 2017 and plans to get listed on the tech-heavy Kosdaq index next month via NH Spec No.10.
The Elec is Korea’s No.1 tech new platform.