ASML has again recorded higher sales in the first quarter of this year, partly due to the current worldwide chip shortages. Many customers have chosen to update their existing systems through paid software updates from ASML.
In an explanatory video, ASML CEO Peter Wennink says that the turnover achieved was mainly above expectations due to the current market situation. “Customers are short of wafers. Read the papers, chip shortages are everywhere. The most effective and efficient way to increase the number of wafers is to upgrade the machines so that they have a higher production. This is what we call a productivity enhancement package. It’s software and can be installed fairly quickly,” said Wennink. He says there is a good margin for that.
Apart from the software, ASML also achieved good results in the past quarter. For example, orders have been promised with a total value of 4.7 billion euros. Almost half of this, a total of 2.3 billion euros, concerns orders for new euv machines. Wennink says that euv has finally reached the status of high-volume manufacturing and that it is being used more and more, including in the field of memory chips. Similarly, DRAM makers have now announced that they will start using euv.
ASML’s CEO believes EUV revenues will grow by 30 percent this year, though he also points to a constraint as ASML has not planned to make more systems than already delivered this year. The company is working with its suppliers to plan to deliver 55 EUV systems next year. Those 55 systems from next year will all be the new NXE:3600D type. This successor to the NXE:3400C is very important for its customers, according to ASML, because it can achieve a daily wafer productivity that is 15 to 20 percent higher.
ASML’s quarterly turnover amounted to 4.36 billion euros. In the last quarter of last year, this was still 4.25 billion euros and in the first three months of 2020 it came to 2.44 billion euros. The profit in the past quarter amounted to 1.33 billion euros. It was almost the same in the last quarter of last year at 1.35 billion euros and the profit in the first three months of last year was considerably lower, namely 391 million euros. The lower figures from a year ago were mainly attributable to Covid-19-related restrictions. For example, there were delayed deliveries and problems in the supply chain.