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Qualcomm, Globalfoundries gain ground in chip sales list

Posted: 12 Nov 2012 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:top 20 chip vendors? global chip sales? McClean Report? TSMC? UMC?

IC Insights Inc. has recently released its list of the top 20 chip vendors as ranked by sales in 2012. According to the market research firm's latest forecast, Fabless chip giant Qualcomm Inc. and foundry vendor Globalfoundries Inc. are expected to be in the lead of its latest list.

According to IC Insights, both firms are expected to grow sales by at least 30 per cent. Qualcomm is on pace for 2012 revenue of more than $12.8 billion, fourth among all chip firms, up from seventh in 2011, according to the November Update to IC Insight's McClean Report. Meanwhile, Globalfoundries is on pace to move to No. 15 this year from No. 21 last year, with projected sales of $4.56 billion, according to the report.

Globalfoundries moved into the top 20 on IC Insights' rankings list for the first time in the first quarter. Three foundries are expected to rank among the top 20 on the market research firm's rankings list for the full year 2012Globalfoundries, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd. (TSMC) and United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC).

Figure 1: 2012F Top 20 Semiconductor Sales Leaders (In Millions of dollars, Including Foundries)
Source: IC Insights Strategic Reviews Database.

Combined, those three foundries are forecast to log a 16 per cent increase in sales year, according to IC Insights. The firm expects that total global chip sales will be down 2 per cent this year. Foundries are defying the market due to the continued success of the fabless-foundry model and the strong movement by many integrated device manufacturers towards a fab-lite model, IC Insights said. The firm expects foundries to see continued strong demand over the next few years.

According to IC Insights, among the top five fastest growing chip firms this year, two are expected to be foundries-Globalfoundries and TSMC-and three are expected to be fabless companiesQualcomm, Nvidia Corp. and Broadcom Corp. -

Qualcomm's rise
Qualcomm's projected sales growth this year continues the firm's meteoric rise over the past several years. In the third quarter of 2008, Qualcomm became the first fabless chip vendor to crack the top 10 among chip suppliers as ranked by sales, according to IC Insights.

At 31 per cent, Globalfoundries' expected sales growth rate is the largest for any top 20 chip firm in 2012, according to IC Insights. The firm noted that the strong growth projection is expected to come during a year when Advanced Micro Devices Inc.Globalfoundries original parent company and its largest customeris forecast to show a steep 17 per cent decline in sales. According to IC Insights, Globalfoundries' success in 2012 is being driven mostly by its success in attracting new IC foundry customers, including Qualcomm, STMicroelectronics NV and Freescale Semiconductor Inc.

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Figure: 2012F Top 20 Semiconductor Sales Leaders Ranked by Growth Rate (In Millions of Dollars, Including Foundries)
Source: IC Insights Reviews Database.

Overall, the top 20 semiconductor suppliers are forecast to register a 1 per cent decline in sales this year, one percentage point better than the rate of decline expected for the total semiconductor market, IC Insights said. Twelve of the top 20 chip suppliers are forecast to register a sales decline this year, including seven of the top 10 largest semiconductor suppliers in the world, according to IC Insights.

- Dylan McGrath
??EE Times

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