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Date: 16-06-12

Top 25 fabless semiconductor ranking 2011: Spreadtrum is the star

IC Insights in its latest release has announced top 25 fabless semiconductor vendors by revenue in year 2011. The star of this list is China based mobile phone chipmaker Spreadtrum whose revenue has grown by 96% in 2011.

The finding and analysis shared by IC-Insights include:

U.S.-based suppliers captured 8 of the top 10 places and 12 of the top 25 positions in the fabless IC supplier ranking for 2011 (Table 1). Combined, the top 25 fabless IC suppliers represented 80% of the $64.9 billion in fabless IC sales last year, up 4 percentage points from 2010. A listing of the top 103 fabless IC suppliers in 2011 was included in IC Insights' March Update, which is part of the subscription to The McClean Report.

It is worth noting that 2010 was the first year on record that total fabless IC company sales growth did not outperform total IC market growth (a 27% increase for fabless IC companies versus a total IC industry growth rate of 33%). However, fabless IC suppliers were back on track in 2011 as worldwide fabless company IC sales increased 4% as compared to total IC market growth of 1%.

Overall, 15 of the top 25 fabless IC companies outperformed the total 2011 fabless IC sales growth rate of 4% (Table 2). In fact, eight fabless companies registered double-digit increases in IC sales last year.

China-based Spreadtrum was the star performer among the fabless IC producers last year, logging an amazing 95% sales jump. Spreadtrum supplies baseband processors and highly integrated CMOS RF transceivers for wireless applications with over 90% of its sales to China-based customers. As was shown in Figure 1, Spreadtrum has risen from being ranked as the 67th largest fabless IC supplier in 2009 to 17th in 2011, a jump of 50 spots in only two years!

Spreadtrum and ST-Ericsson are both heavily involved in the cellphone marketplace. In contrast to Spreadtrum, ST-Ericsson's IC sales dropped 28% in 2011 after declining by 9% in 2010. The difficult times at the company led to a restructuring in March of 2012 and it is rumored that this was a prelude to eventually putting the company up for sale.

The 8 top-25 fabless IC companies that registered double-digit growth in 2011 had combined sales of $20.1 billion, up 29% from their combined sales of $15.6 billion in 2010. Overall, these top eight performers increased their combined sales by $4.5 billion last year as compared to a $2.4 billion increase for total fabless IC company sales in 2011. It is obvious that these eight companies are now prime targets for the IC foundries (e.g., TSMC, GlobalFoundries, UMC, Samsung, etc.).

IC Insights' April Update to The McClean Report (to be released later this month) is dedicated to IC company rankings and includes the top 50 semiconductor, IC, and fabless IC suppliers. Moreover, the top company rankings of MPU, MCU, foundry, flash memory, DRAM, analog, etc., suppliers will also be provided in the April Update.

Table1: Fabless ranking by revenue size

Table2: Fabless ranking by revenue growth:

Company 2010 sales in Million US$ 2011 sales in Million US$ Growth rate
Spreadtrum 346 674 95
Dialog Semiconductor 297 527 77
Qualcomm 7204 9910 38
MegaChips 337 456 35
LSI Corp 1616 2042 26
Mstar 1065 1220 15
Avago 1187 1341 13
Nvidia 3575 3939 10
HiSilicon 652 710 9
Semtech 403 438 9
Broadcom 6589 7160 9
Altera 1954 2064 6
CSR 801 845 5
Realtek Semiconductor 706 742 5
SMSC 397 415 5
Novatek 1149 1198 4
PMC-Sierra 635 654 3
AMD 6494 6568 1
Silicon Labs 494 492 0
Himax 643 633 -2
Xilinx 2311 2269 -2
Lantiq 550 540 -2
Marvell 3592 3445 -4
MediaTek 3590 2969 -17
ST-Ericsson 1146 825 -28
Source: IC Insights      


Source: IC Insights

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