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Winners, losers in 2009 chip vendor ranking

Posted: 31 Mar 2010 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:chip ranking? DRAM? NAND? PC market?

Qualcomm, Hynix and Advanced Micro Devices each inched up two places in the top 10 ranking of chip vendors by 2009 revenue by Gartner Inc.

The ranking was qualitatively the same as that produced by Gartner in December 2009, but the revenue numbers and market share percentages have changed to reflect corrections applied by Gartner to its individual company and total market data.

The degree to which top-ranked Intel, second-placed Samsung and third-placed Toshiba increased market share from 2008 at the expense of fourth-placed Texas Instruments and fifth-placed STMicroelectronics, was increased.

The winners in the ranking are still Qualcomm, who jumped two places from eighth to sixth, Hynix Semiconductor which rose to seventh from ninth and AMD, which came back into the top 10, ranked at number nine. The losers were Renesas Technology Corp., which dropped a place to eighth, and Infineon, which fell from sixth in 2008 to tenth in 2009.

Intel held the number one position for the 18th consecutive year. Gartner now thinks Intel increased its market share to 14.6 percent in 2009 from 13.6 percent, despite a $1.6 billion revenue decline. This performance was primarily due to the relative strength of the PC market, mobiles in particular, which sold well despite the recession.

Samsung Electronics was one of the few companies to see a revenue increase in 2009; part of the reason was that its main product linesDRAM and NAND flashhad already seen strong declines in 2008, causing the vendors to quickly react to 2009 conditions by adjusting supply. This situation forced up pricing substantially through the year for both product areas and, combined with Samsung's technology lead and strong financial position, resulted in revenue growth.

Hynix Semiconductor, like its rival Samsung, saw revenue growth. For Hynix, the growth came from the DRAM market, in which it was able to gain share and increase revenue in a market that saw revenue decline.

Infineon's revenue decline of 43.1 percent was due to the bankruptcy of its Qimonda memory business and the divestiture of its wireline communications into a company called Lantiq. On like comparison basis Infineon sales declined 16.1 percent, roughly inline with is peers, but still behind the overall market which Gartner estimates fell 10.5 percent to $228.4 billion in 2009.

"This is the first time the industry has seen two consecutive years of revenue declines. However, the industry performed much better than expected in the second half, setting the stage for strong 2010 growth against weak comparables," said Gartner analyst Peter Middleton.

- Peter Clarke
EE Times

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