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Fabless race still led by U.S. firms

Posted: 27 Apr 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:global? fabless chip? vendors? U.S.? IC companies?

IC Insights Inc.'s latest sales ranking of global fabless chip vendors shows U.S.-based firms occupying nine of the top 10 spots and 13 of the top 20 posts.

Combined, the top 20 fabless IC suppliers represented 77 percent of the $59.9 billion in

fabless IC sales last year, down two points from 2009 but up two points from 2008, the market research firm said.

Thirteen fabless IC companies had over $1 billion in IC sales in 2010, IC Insights reported.

Fabless IC suppliers

IC Insights said 2010 was the first year on record that total fabless IC company sales did not outperform total IC market growth. Fabless chip company revenue grew by 27 percent in 2010, compared to 31 percent for the overall semiconductor industry, IC Insights said. Relatively poor performances by Qualcomm Inc., MediaTek Inc., Nvidia Corp., LSI Corp., ST-Ericsson, Realtek Semiconductor Corp. and Himax Technologies Inc. were to blame, according to IC Insights.

In total, these seven suppliers increased their 2010 IC sales by only 8 percent, dismal results compared to total IC market growth of 31 percent, IC Insights said.

On the flip side, IC Insights identified a list of seven fabless vendors that outgrew the broader chip market in 2010, punctuated by Taiwanese consumer and communications chip firm MStar Inc., which grew a whopping 76 percent in 2010. These "magnificent seven" high-growth billion-dollar fabless companies, in total, registered a 47 percent increase in IC sales last year and accounted for 45 percent of the total increase in fabless sales ($5.7 billion out of $12.6 billion), according to IC Insights.

The latest edition of IC Insights' McClean Report, which will be released later this month, is dedicated to IC company rankings, including the top 50 semiconductor, IC and fabless IC suppliers.

Top fables IC suppliers

- Dylan McGrath
??EE Times

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