Electronics Production | April 22, 2011

'The Magnificent 7' fabless companies' sales surged 47%

U.S.-based suppliers captured 9 of the Top10 places and 13 of the Top20 positions in the fabless IC supplier ranking for 2010.
Combined, the Top20 fabless IC suppliers represented 77% of the USD 59.9 billion in fabless IC sales last year, down two points from 2009 but up two points from 2008.

It is worth noting that 2010 was the first year on record that total fabless IC company sales did not outperform total IC market growth (a 27% increase for fabless IC companies versus a total IC industry growth rate of 31%). As shown in Figure 1, relatively poor performances by Qualcomm, MediaTek, Nvidia, LSI Corp., ST-Ericsson, Realtek, and Himax were to blame. In total, these seven "poor performers" increased their 2010 IC sales by only 8%, dismal results compared to total IC market growth of 31%.

Overall, 13 fabless IC companies had over USD 1.0 billion in IC sales in 2010. In contrast to the seven "poor performing" fabless companies mentioned above, IC Insights lists its "Magnificent Seven" fabless IC suppliers in Figure 2. This sales-growth ranking includes fabless IC suppliers that had over USD 1.0 billion in sales in 2010 and outgrew the total IC industry increase of 31%.

© All tables: IC Insights

These seven high-growth billion-dollar fabless companies, in total, registered a strong 47% increase in IC sales last year. Moreover, they accounted for 45% of the total increase in fabless IC sales in 2010 (USD 5.7 billion out of USD 12.6 billion)!

With only seven fabless companies out of just over 100 major fabless IC suppliers (i.e., companies with greater than USD 10 million in sales) representing such a large share of last year's fabless IC sales increase, these companies are the prime targets for the IC foundries (e.g., TSMC, GlobalFoundries, UMC, Samsung, etc.).


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