January 18, 2007 – Fabless IC suppliers, who made up just under 10% of worldwide IC sales in 2000, now account for 20% of the market, and will likely push to 25% after the end of this decade, according to new data from IC Insights Inc.
Fabless IC sales suppliers have typically enjoyed much higher sales growth than the overall IC industry — about 25% CAGR from 1998-2006 vs. 9% CAGR for the worldwide IC market, with fabless sales growing by nearly 6X (to $42.3 billion) while IC sales essentially doubled to $211.0 billion. The growth gap narrowed a bit in 2006, though, with 16% overall sales growth for fabless companies, vs. 9% for the IC industry.
By 2011, the firm forecasts that fabless companies will have increased their global IC sales marketshare to 25%, as more chipmakers such as LSI Logic and Agere continue to shift to a fab-lite or even fully fables model.
Given the big historic growth disparity between fabless IC suppliers and IDMs, “it comes as little surprise that fabless IC companies are quickly increasing their share of the total IC market,” the firm stated. “Overall, fabless IC suppliers, and the IC foundries that serve them, are becoming a larger force in the total IC industry.”