Analyst: Another half-year, another IC shakeup

August 4, 2008 – There was a bit of a shakeup in the rankings among top suppliers of semiconductors during the first half of this year — just like there was a year ago. Beneath the familiar top global IC firms (Intel, Samsung, TI, and Toshiba) were a number of other “movers and shakers” in 1H08, notably among foundries and fabless companies, according to data from IC Insights.

Best growth among the top 20 firms (ranked by revenue) went to TSMC which saw sales rocket 35% in 1H08 vs. the same period a year ago, Qualcomm, Panasonic, Nvidia, Samsung, and Broadcom, all better than doubled the top 20 firms’ collective 10% growth during the period. Other individual notes: fabless suppliers Qualcomm and Broadcom jumped four and threthree spotsspectively, while Panasonic and Matsushita rose three spots each thanks to a strong yen vs. the US dollar.

The only firm to see sales decline was Hynix (-23%), punished in a big way by slumping memory prices but only costing the firm one spot. TI, NXP, Toshiba, Freescale, and Sony all underperformed the rest of the market with small 0%-4% increases. Qimonda dropped 12 spots to fall out of the list entirely (No.30) with a 47% sales decline (spared somewhat by a strong euro), losing >$2.2B through its fiscal 3Q08. TI’s poor showing in 1H08 seems to be a company-specific issue, since both Qualcomm and ST did very well in the cell-phone marketplace, IC Insights noted.

Slumps by Hynix and Qualcomm point to a larger shift in the IC rankings — a notable lack of memory influence, with many major DRAM/flash firms absent (e.g. Spansion, Powerchip, Nanya, etc.). That explains the 10% growth for the top 20 vs. the overall IC industry’s 6% growth in 1H08.

Top 20 semiconductor sales leaders in 1H08, in US $M. (Source: IC Insights)


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