Wafer-level packaging (WLP) saw significant growth in 2021 due in large part to the increased performance needs of data-driven 5G network devices. Because WLP is performed when chips are still on the wafer, ACM Research has been able to leverage and adapt our expertise in front-end solutions to address high-volume WLP challenges. Our deep understanding of new and emerging requirements has enabled us to exceed customer expectations over this last year, and we’re looking forward to continuing our momentum in the years to come.
One of the primary ways we’ve addressed WLP requirements is by increasing our ability to serve the global marketplace. Throughout 2021, we’ve grown our U.S. and European teams to meet changing market needs, and we plan to expand our team further in 2022. ACM has also received several orders from major U.S. manufacturers, demonstrating our successful globalization strategy. We’ve been chosen by these manufacturers for our proprietary and differentiated technologies, as well as our ability to meet advanced performance specifications. All of this led to us being recognized as the eighth-fastest-growing organization on Fortune magazine’s 2021 100 Fastest-Growing Companies list.
As is true for the semiconductor industry at large, we’ve faced challenges from global supply chain issues in 2021. At the same time, this shortage is creating a significant opportunity for equipment suppliers like ACM. As the world’s need for chips has exploded, supply chain disruptions have made it difficult for chipmakers to meet demand. This is driving large manufacturers to add capacity and build new fabs to address chip shortages—and new fabs need new equipment.
As we move into 2022, we predict both the front-end and WLP markets will continue their rapid growth. We plan to maintain our momentum by continuing to add to the range of process technologies we support. For WLP, we currently offer thick photoresist coating and developing, EC plating, metal etching, and resist stripping for redistribution layer through silicon vias and bumping processes. Our WLP systems support copper pillar and gold bumping as well. Looking ahead, we will assess market demand and continue to deliver advanced technologies that extend our portfolio, both in terms of processes and markets served.
Just as our core markets are growing, ACM also has ambitious growth plans. We’re hiring across the globe, developing new technologies, and, importantly, we’re focused on reducing chemical usage and waste. ACM is dedicated to helping customers reach their sustainability goals, including zero-waste-to-landfill initiatives. As part of this, we’ve developed closed-loop systems that require lower chemistry volumes and recycle-and-reuse chemistries for eco-friendlier processes.
Allied Market Research predicts the global WLP market will reach $7.8 billion by 2022, and ACM is on track to lead the way.
Editor’s Note: This post originally appeared as part of The 2022 Yearbook Special Section: Community Reflections. You can read the complete article here.