In its latest report, Gartner has noted a steep decline in the spending on chip equipment worldwide. According to the report, the total spending on semiconductor capital equipment worldwide was $16.6 billion – a 45.8% fall from the corresponding number in 2008.
The major areas to be hit hard were wafer fab equipment and back-end equipment which fell by 47% and 40% respectively. DigiTimes writes,
“It was a challenging year in 2009 for wafer fab equipment (WFE) companies, because wafer fab revenues declined for the second straight year. WFE revenues slid 47.4% on year to US$12.7 billion, according to Gartner, adding that the vast majority of purchases were for technology upgrades.”
The report further assorted the top semiconductor equipment manufacturers and concluded that Applied Materials, Tokyo Electron and ASML continue to be the top vendors in the list.