Sunday, March 02, 2014

TowerJazz Talks about Panasonic CIS Process

Seeking Alpha published TowerJazz earnings call transcript where the company talks about oncoming CIS foundry process based on Panasonic fab capabilities:

"The JV has multiple additional specialty flows, including Panasonic's world-class, high definition front side illumination, low dark current CMOS image sensor technology, and high voltage SOI based power management technologies. Panasonic's High Definition FSI is a world leading CMOS image sensor benchmark technology for high quantum efficiency. It is a unique technology that enables the use of front side illumination, even for small pixels, against the current industry trend of using expensive and less efficient back side illumination. Panasonic's dark current performance, CMOS image sensor technology, is known to be of the best in the industry, not only due to the average very low dark currents, even at elevated temperatures, but also with extremely small tail for high dark current pixels, known as bright pixels. As a result, Panasonic's technology allows excellent images at lowlight conditions. Already, we have begun engagements with multiple, first-year, brand-recognized, high-end camera makers for applications our internal technologies could not serve, prior to this joint venture."

"the new exciting joint venture with Panasonic opens an outstanding growth path for our CIS business unit with Panasonic's 12-inch, 65-nanometer CIS technology. We plan to use this facility to penetrate new markets such as high-end DSLR for professional photography, and high-end security cameras. Panasonic's extremely high-quality process, including their outstanding high definition FSI, combined with our stitching technology, is very appealing. And we are in active discussions with customers about high-volume, high-margin opportunities."

Then the company reports about its image sensor business achievements:

"Revenues from our CMOS Image Sensor business unit grew by approximately 20%, as compared to 2012. We expect it to grow substantially in the coming 2 years and beyond. Design wins of CMOS Image Sensors over the past 2 years have totaled 75 different products. As you know, this business unit targets the markets of high-end photography, cinematography and broadcasting segments, as well as medical and dental x-ray sensors, high-end industrial, high frame-rate sensors, automotive and security sensors and 3D sensors for gesture control applications. The high-end video market is in a worldwide growth phase, which we are enjoying.

Our market share in the high-end photography and broadcasting segment is now close to 50%. The 2 leading cinematography camera suppliers and one of the market leaders in broadcasting segment, are making their sensors exclusively with us.

The dental x-ray market, we are the market-leading supplier with over 70% market share in intraoral dental sensors. We are growing substantially in the extraoral market, with 2 new major suppliers that are ramping to volume production this year. The industrial sensor market, growing at a 30% CAGR, is also an important sector for us where we are delivering high volumes for several of our European customers.

Last year, we announced a large deal with a market leader for a consumer 3D gesture control sensor. We expect this to move into volume production during 2014, with a major ramp in 2015 and 2016.


  1. Regarding low dark current process, TowerJazz is No.1 in foundries, right?


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