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news digest ♦ Equipment and Materials


new business development for HiCz and our traditional PV business.”


GT’s Advanced Sapphire Growth Furnaces (ASF) is a production proven furnace that produces high quality sapphire material for the LED industry.


Rubicon six inch sapphire sales make up for cheaper small cores


The provider of sapphire substrates and products to the LED, RFIC, semiconductor, and optical industries saw strong demand for six-inch polished wafers in the quarter, particularly from the LED market


Rubicon Technology, Inc. of Bensenville, IL, USAhas reported financial results for its fourth quarter ended December 31st, 2012.


The company reported fourth quarter revenue of $20 million as compared with $19.9 million in the prior quarter. Revenue from six-inch wafer sales showed another sequential increase to $17.5 million from $16.4 million in the prior quarter, a 7 percent increase.


Due to low industry pricing for two through four inch core products, the company decided to sell a limited quantity of those products in the quarter.


GT’s ASF furnace


Reinhard received her BSEE from University of Illinois and an MBA from The Kellogg Graduate School of Management. She has over 20 years of experience with leading technology companies including Motorola, Cisco, Nokia, and H-P holding senior level positions in new business development, marketing, sales, and product management. She has lived in Asia and has extensive experience in China and Asia Pacific evangelising and introducing new products to major OEMs. Reinhard will be located in GT’s headquarters in Merrimack, New Hampshire.


“Our goal for the show is to continue educating the market about the unique properties of GT’s ASF-grown sapphire material for cover and touch screen applications,” says Linda Reinhard, GT’s vice president of business development and product management.


“ASF-grown sapphire’s durability and resistance to scratching makes it ideally suited for a wide range of cover and touch screen applications from ruggedised phones, camera covers, point of sale devices and smartphone and touch screen devices. Other reinforced glass and cover screen technologies try to emulate what ASF-grown sapphire does naturally.”


GT Advanced Technologies Inc. is a global provider of polysilicon production technology and sapphire and silicon crystalline growth systems and materials for the solar, LED and other specialty markets. The company says its products and services allow its customers to optimise their manufacturing environments and lower their cost of ownership.


Raja Parvez, President and CEO of Rubicon Technology, comments, “We saw strong demand for our six-inch polished wafers in the quarter, particularly from the LED market. We continue to be the largest provider of six-inch polished wafers in the market due to our strength in both large diameter crystal growth and large diameter polishing, evidenced by the fact that we have now shipped over 400,000 polished six-inch wafers to date into the LED and SoS markets.”


While the pricing environment has not improved for two through four inch core products, Rubicon has started taking orders for those products for delivery in the first and second quarters in order to begin reducing inventory levels and maintain customer relationships. With the firm’s resumption of sales into this market, pricing has decreased further.


William Weissman, CFO of Rubicon Technology, says, “Current pricing of two through four inch core products is now below our carrying cost in finished goods and WIP inventory for those products. As a result, we recorded a $1.6 million adjustment in the period to reflect the value of those products in inventory at the current market price.”


He continues, “We believe that our competitors are now selling smaller diameter cores at cash cost in order to reduce inventory or to keep utilisation rates high. However, excess capacity in the market is gradually being absorbed and we believe the pricing environment should eventually improve. Exactly when and how quickly pricing will improve is difficult to predict.”


The company reported a sequential reduction in margins due primarily to the lower smaller diameter product pricing and resulting inventory adjustment. The loss per share in the fourth quarter was $(0.05) as compared with a diluted EPS in the third quarter of a positive $0.01 per share.


First Quarter 2013 Guidance Commenting on the outlook for the first quarter of 2013, Parvez 128 www.compoundsemiconductor.net March 2013


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