Yannick BEDIN, EUMETRYS’CEO’s interview, on BFM Business TV – “Decoding” programme – (September 2022)
Electronic chips are everywhere in our daily lives. In our mobile phones, our computers, our headphones, our cars… Eumetrys is an expert in metrology for the electronic chip industry. Its customer portfolio is mainly European and it is positioned on a niche market. It provides essential support to manufacturers of these electronic chips. Yannick Bedin, CEO of Eumetrys, explains how the company has diversified its offer, demonstrated its agility and what the challenges are in its sector of activity.
What is Eumetrys’ role in the microchip industry?
My previous activity was already in the field of metrology, then dedicated to the semiconductor industry. This experience led me to create the company Eumetrys in 2012. Our job is to meet technical specifications and qualify measuring equipment. They support our customers to manufacture functional electronic chips.
Our equipment also qualifies Chips that do not work, so that they can be corrected.
We use optical and automated microscopes to measure microchips down to 110 nanometers, about a thousand times smaller than the diameter of a human hair. These measuring tools are delivered to some forty European production sites, including France, Germany, England, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Belgium, the Czech Republic and the Scandinavian countries.
For example, we supply STMicrolectronics, a Franco-Italian manufacturer of electronic chips, one of the leaders in the European market.
What support do you offer?
We don’t just sell equipment, but also its installation, qualification and after-sales support tailored to the customer’s needs. Some of our customers have been satisfied with these service contracts for 10 years, which enables us to respond to their requirements in the best possible way. They inform us more quickly of their needs, which we respond to with agility. This proximity is the trademark of Eumetrys. Our multilingual team ensures personal contact with our customers in order to anticipate their requirements in the microchip industry, and even with their own customers.
Who are your customers?
We mainly work for the automotive and telecommunication industries. The autonomous and electric vehicle requires more and more electronic chips, which implies a strong growth activity. As far as telecommunication is concerned, we are addressing the mobile phone sector, but also everything associated with it, such as transmission antennas and 5G transmission.
For example, five times as many electronic filters are needed for a 5G phone as for the same 4G model.
Besides metrology, what other activities do you offer in the microchip market?
When Eumetrys was founded, it was mainly linked to one supplier. Our activity has been diversifying for about three years, with the aim of becoming a multi-vendor service company. Firstly, by selling particle inspection tools, useful for reading the level of contamination in a production sample of these chips. It determines whether a production run is efficient, or whether, on the contrary, systems useful for production need to be cleaned to make them functional.
We also provide our customers with spare parts for sub-assemblies of equipment. The European semiconductor industry is old. The biggest companies had their golden age between 1996 and 2000. As a result, their production equipment is now more than 20 years old and requires maintenance. Eumetrys offers them repair solutions to keep their robots, for example, functional. We participate in optimising the equipment in place, so it is also a question of cost control and ecological issues (maintain rather than replace).
This service is all the more useful as manufacturers such as STMicrolectronics and X-FAB France for example are significantly increasing their production of electronic chips. Indeed, as part of the European policy aimed at greater autonomy in the manufacture of electronic chips, STMicrolectronics is opening a new manufacturing unit, while X-FAB France is continuing to develop its activity at the Corbeil-Essonnes site. All their production volumes are now (over)utilised in capacity. With such a full production capacity, manufacturers need the support of suppliers such as Eumetrys to secure their production in their own manufacturing units.
What do you do to distinguish yourself from the competition?
We provide tailor-made solutions for each client, even though their technological specificities are very diverse. We make sure we communicate with customers and prospects by publishing on social networks. We also publish articles in specialised magazines. In addition, we issue newsletters and use our network of contacts to reach customers and, above all, to build relationships of trust. We meet our customers and prospects in person at semiconductor trade shows and during regular visits to their manufacturing facilities.
The microchip industry should be of interest to young people, as it represents the most advanced technology. Eumetrys is moving in this direction by recruiting young talent who bring fresh thinking, innovative ideas and a change of habit to provide agile solutions to our customers. I believe in the richness of collective intelligence, Eumetrys is an inclusive company.
Agility is part of our DNA. It is essential in the face of a business that has become more intense after the confinements. Our agility was sharpened during the pandemic, because the activity in our sector remained as high as ever. For example, we very quickly replaced travel to our clients’ premises with video-conferencing meetings. We were using interactive glasses to be able to work together with our customers and carry out repairs without being present at a site.
Do you have any final words?
Germany is the country with the largest semiconductor activity in Europe. Therefore, Eumetrys has recently opened a German subsidiary to be closer to its customers and to take into account the cross-cultural dimension. We also want to develop further, with new production lines. We are therefore actively looking for new activities, but also for partners and of course employees to enable our development to be successful.