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Celebrating KLA Korea at 30

Dec 20, 2023 2 min read

Before 1993, KLA had a small local service operation in South Korea. But as the semiconductor business in the region grew and customers wanted direct sales from KLA and enhanced service support, the company set up a larger presence and opened a site in Seoul, initially with 20 people.

It was from these basic beginnings that KLA Korea established itself and began to build the large presence it has today with more than 800 people working at sites across the country. Some employees, like ChangHo Lee, have been with KLA Korea from its earliest days.

“KLA Korea’s 30th year is only the beginning. I hope all our KLA colleagues will share their own story of KLA in next 10 and 20 years. We should all continue to keep looking ahead toward an even brighter future for KLA.”

ChangHo Lee, business unit inspection
From a small presence in the early 1990s (above), KLA Korea has grown along with the semiconductor manufacturing industry’s expansion in East Asia.

Yesterday, Today and Beyond

Also among the earliest employees is Changwoo Kim, who has been with KLA Korea since the start and worked in multiple roles since beginning his career as a customer service engineer.

These past 30 years for me have been full of gratitude and good fortune. KLA provided me with the opportunity to contribute to the Korean semiconductor industry through learning and growth.”

Changwoo Kim, inspection technical director, South Korea

Headquartered today in Dongtan New Town near Seoul, KLA Korea offers product installation, customer support and applications engineering, as well as KLA’s industry-leading process control and process-enabling solutions to its customers based in the region.

KLA Korea’s team helps chip manufacturers ramp up products quickly and run at optimum performance. Close collaboration with colleagues and global customers has driven success over the past three decades.

ChangHo, who started at KLA Korea in 1995, has built a career at the company, working in customer-focused positions as a service engineer, applications engineer and regional product marketing.  

“I’m proud that my efforts as an engineer have improved customer loyalty for KLA products and brands,” ChangHo says. “Being a part of KLA’s growth has been a fulfilling experience.”

“Over our 30 years, KLA Korea has always been innovative in driving growth in the semiconductor market, due to our leading-edge customers as well as our talented, hardworking employees who have been absolutely essential to our growth.”

Yanghyong Kim, country president, KLA Korea

We’ll have a look at what’s ahead for KLA Korea in an upcoming posting.

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