This November, many companies will take advantage of surplus capital before their budget is set for the upcoming year. In a recent survey of nearly 150 compound semiconductor manufacturers on their capital expense budgets, around 42% of companies predict their capex budget will increase in 2019, while 31% predict a decrease. In an ever-changing business landscape, it’s crucial to maximize your capex budget in as many areas as possible.
To do this while maximizing your factory output, we recommend choosing the process technology that best meets your production requirements. But this means not necessarily buying new equipment just because it is “better.” Where available, buying refurbished equipment can help companies realize long-term health and success.
Benefits of buying refurbished equipment
Optimize resources to expand product development: When purchased from a trustworthy partner, refurbished equipment can fill a gap in your technology portfolio. Saving money with refurbished equipment frees up resources so you can invest in updated equipment elsewhere, effectively keeping you ahead of the curve with your product development and helping you innovate with market-driven solutions.
Maximize time and cost savings on lower-volume production: With shorter lead times and lower cost of acquisition, refurbished equipment means you will shorten your time to production while saving money. These time and cost savings will satisfy the process engineers, equipment engineers, and C-level executives with vested interests in your production. Ultimately, these time and cost savings translate to quicker time to market. This can be particularly beneficial for less critical or low-volume process steps where the shorter equipment lifetime is less of a factor.
Improve your process with tightly integrated controls: Purchasing refurbished equipment from a reliable manufacturer with production-proven solutions means you have access to a service partner that can make sure your systems – as well as any in-situ controls such as PEM or OMS – are well-integrated. This product integration can give you many of the benefits of an application-specific configuration, such as increased throughput, higher manufacturing yields and better repeatability.
Pick a partner you can trust
We caution against purchasing used equipment solely because it is less expensive. This is especially true if the equipment is outdated or if it’s purchased from a third-party reseller or an unknown vendor. Buying refurbished from an original manufacturer you trust means having access to the necessary equipment upgrades or modifications you will need to make the equipment productive.
When thinking about your product development goals for next year, maximizing efficiency and balancing the competing priorities of time, cost and performance is essential. Refurbished equipment can be an excellent solution, allowing you to expand your product roadmap while controlling cost. Picking the right solutions provider will simplify your design process while making sure you have the support you need along the way. Your team will thank you for the increased production efficiency.
Here’s a deeper dive into what to consider when purchasing pre-owned equipment.