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Innovation is a team sport
2021 year-end figures
R&D partner agencies
Support to high-tech startups and scaleups
Contribution to EU research projects
Innovation is our lifeblood, the engine that drives our business.
A strong innovation ecosystem is crucial. To drive the fast pace of innovation in our value chain, our technology is developed together with the help of our partners and collaborative knowledge network. To fulfill our leadership role and reinforce our innovation footprint for future generations, we also give back to the industry by supporting and sharing our expertise with high-tech startups.
The need for innovation
As the markets of artificial intelligence, 5G connectivity, augmented reality, and the internet of things expand, consumers across the world are using ever-more powerful and sophisticated devices that are increasingly interconnected.
These developments drive demand for microchips, which in turn drive demand for the chipmaking systems that produce smaller, faster, cheaper, more powerful and energy-efficient microchips. We can only meet this demand by consistently and continuously advancing our technology.
Innovation is crucial to the continuing success of our business. To stay ahead, we invest heavily in R&D. Every day, more than 10,000 of the brightest minds in R&D take on the exciting challenge to innovate the most advanced lithography systems in the world. We co-develop expertise within a wide network of technology partners, such as universities and research institutions. This approach allows us to accelerate innovation and provides us with access to a large leading-edge knowledge base across a wide range of technologies.
To maintain our pace of innovation we need to develop the right knowledge and share it quickly and efficiently. Faster access to knowledge spurs faster development, allowing problems to be solved as quickly as possible. We have several programs in place to continually build and maintain a solid technical and functional knowledge base across the company.
Collaboration for invention
We develop our technology in close collaboration with partners inside and outside our company in an innovation ecosystem based on trust. We share both risk and reward and work hard at developing long-term relationships with our partners, listening to each other and pushing each other to continuously innovate. This approach allows us to accelerate innovation and provides access to a large leading-edge knowledge base across a wide range of technologies.
An example of this is our partnership with Carl Zeiss AG which we’ve had for over three decades. This partnership runs according to the principle of ‘two companies, one business’ working together to drive operational excellence. To accelerate innovation in High-NA technology, we hold an interest in and support Carl Zeiss SMT.
We’re also working with universities and research institutions including imec in Belgium, the technical universities in Twente, Delft and Eindhoven and the Advanced Research Center for Nanolithography (ARCNL) in the Netherlands.
Supporting startups and scaleups
We believe an inclusive and sustainable innovation ecosystem can unleash dynamic and competitive technologies that provide new solutions to society’s challenges. ASML has been around for close to four decades, but it’s our startup mentality – innovative, adaptable, purpose-driven – that has helped us grow into a successful multinational company.
To nurture innovation by new generations of technological talents, we share our expertise with entrepreneurs and startups. We make use of our experts’ in-depth competencies and knowledge to support startups and scaleups during their pivotal first few years.
By fostering entrepreneurship, we aim to help these young enterprises excel and grow. What we share is based on what we are good at, like building complex manufacturing systems. Sharing our expertise is also a way to strengthen our regional high-tech ecosystem.
ASML as a venture-builder
Through the Eindhoven Startup Alliance, we have supported startups and scaleups in their various stages over the years in collaboration with other tech-minded peers from our region. Together with startup accelerator HighTechXL, we aim to support startups along their journey. By providing them access into our ecosystem and sharing our knowledge, together with the Make Next Platform, we help them grow into a sustainable company.
Partnering in research
Together with a group of European companies and research institutes, we run collaborative subsidy projects aimed at advancing integrated circuit technology for the next node through the 'More Moore' program. Right now, we are leading the three-year PIn3S research pilot project into 3 nm semiconductor technology. The European Union is contributing up to €30 million of the total cost of €141.6 million for this project, as part of its objective to strengthen the European high-tech industry.
The PIn3S project will form the basis for innovations yet to come, enabling solutions that address societal challenges in communication, mobility, healthcare, security, energy, and safety and security.
Operating in an international industry with a global value chain where strong incentives to compete and drive innovation are, it is important to represent ASML’s interests towards governments in support of ASML’s strategic objectives.