IC Insights released its May Update to the 2021 McClean Report last week. This Update included a discussion of the 1Q21 IC industry market results, an updated quarterly forecast for the remainder of this year, and a look at the top-25 1Q21 semiconductor suppliers. The top-15 1Q21 semiconductor suppliers are covered in this research bulletin.
The top-15 worldwide semiconductor (IC and O S D—optoelectronic, sensor, and discrete) sales ranking for 1Q21 is shown in Figure 1. It includes eight suppliers headquartered in the US, two each in South Korea, Taiwan and Europe, and one in Japan. The ranking includes six fabless companies (Qualcomm, Broadcom, Nvidia, MediaTek, AMD, and Apple) and one pure-play foundry (TSMC).
If pure-play foundry TSMC was excluded from the ranking, Europe-based IDM NXP ($2,503 million in sales) would have been ranked 15th in the 1Q21 listing. In total, the top-15 semiconductor companies’ sales surged by 21% in 1Q21 compared to 1Q20, three points greater than the total worldwide semiconductor industry 1Q21/1Q20 increase of 18%. Fourteen of the top-15 companies had semiconductor sales of at least $3.0 billion in 1Q21. As shown, it took almost $2.6 billion in quarterly sales to make it into the 1Q21 top-15 semiconductor supplier list.
There were two new entrants into the top-15 ranking in 1Q21—MediaTek and AMD. MediaTek and AMD replaced HiSilicon and Sony in the top-15 listing. HiSilicon, which was ranked 12th in the top-15 sales ranking in 1Q20, is the semiconductor design division of China-based telecommunications giant Huawei with over 90% of the company’s sales going to its parent company. However, U.S. sanctions on Huawei/HiSilicon terminated the ability of HiSilicon to purchase ICs from its primary foundry TSMC beginning in 4Q20.
AMD’s year-over-year sales surged 93% in 1Q21, the highest growth rate of any of the top-15 companies, to move up seven spots in the ranking and into 11th place. Moreover, the company expects its full-year 2021 sales to increase about 50%. MediaTek also posted an incredible year-over-year sales increase of 90% in 1Q21 and jumped up six positions into 10th place. Interestingly, the four highest year-over-year growth rates registered in 1Q21 were from fabless suppliers (AMD, MediaTek, Qualcomm, and Nvidia), each greater than 50%.
Thirteen of the top-15 semiconductor companies registered a double-digit year-over-year sales increase in 1Q21 while only one company—Intel—displayed a decline. Illustrating Intel’s ‘drag’ on the total growth rate of the top-15 semiconductor companies, the remaining 14 suppliers in the ranking registered a combined 1Q21/1Q20 sales jump of 29%, eight points higher than when Intel is included.
IC Insights includes foundries in the top-15 semiconductor supplier ranking since it has always viewed the ranking as a top supplier list, not a marketshare ranking, and realizes that in some cases the semiconductor sales are double counted. With many of our clients being vendors to the semiconductor industry (supplying equipment, chemicals, gases, etc.), excluding large IC manufacturers like the foundries would leave significant ‘holes’ in the list of top semiconductor suppliers. As shown in the listing, the foundries and fabless companies are identified. In the April Update to The McClean Report, marketshare rankings of IC suppliers by product type were presented and foundries were excluded from these listings.
Overall, the top-15 list is provided as a guideline to identify which companies are the leading semiconductor suppliers, whether they are IDMs, fabless companies, or foundries.