Laser-assisted, one-step direct nanoimprinting of metal and semiconductor nanoparticles (NPs) was investigated to fabricate submicron structures including mesh, line, nanopillar and nanowire arrays. Master molds were fabricated with high-speed (200mms 1) laser direct writing (LDW) of negative or positive photoresists on Si wafers. The fabrication was completely free of lift-off or reactive ion etching processes. Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) stamps fabricated from master molds replicated nanoscale structures (down to 200nm) with no or negligible residual layers on various substrates. The low temperature and pressure used for nanoimprinting enabled direct nanofabrication on flexible substrates. With the aid of high-speed LDW, wafer scale 4inch direct nanoimprinting was demonstrated. © 2012 IOP Publishing Ltd.