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Worldwide semiconductor revenue totaled $343.5 billion in 2016, a 2.6% increase from 2015 revenue of $334.9 billion, according to final results by Gartner, Inc. The top 25 semiconductor vendors' combined revenue increased 10.5%, a significantly better performance than the overall industry's growth; however, most of this growth resulted from merger and acquisition (M&A) activity.
"The semiconductor industry rebounded in 2016, with a weak start to the year, characterized by inventory correction, giving way to strengthening demand and an improving pricing environment in the second half," said James Hines research director at Gartner. "Worldwide semiconductor revenue growth was supported by increasing production in many electronic equipment segments, improving NAND flash memory pricing and relatively benign currency movements."
Intel retained its No. 1 position as the largest semiconductor manufacturer and grew its semiconductor revenue 4.6% in 2016. Samsung Electronics continued to maintain the No. 2 spot with 11.7% market share.
Consolidation continued to play a major role in the market share rankings, with several large companies growing through acquisitions. Merger and acquisition activity among the major vendors in 2016 included Avago Technologies' acquisition of Broadcom Corp. to become Broadcom Ltd., On Semiconductor's acquisition of Fairchild Semiconductor, and Western Digital's acquisition of SanDisk. The largest mover in the top 25 was Broadcom Ltd., which moved up 12 places in the market share ranking.
"The combined revenue of the top 25 semiconductor vendors increased by 10.5% during 2016 and accounted for a 74.9% share, outperforming the rest of the market, which saw a 15.6% revenue decline," said Mr. Hines. "However, these results are skewed by the large amount of M&A activity during 2015 and 2016. If we adjust for this M&A activity by adding the revenue of each acquired company to the revenue of the acquirer for both 2015 and 2016 where necessary, then the top 25 vendors would have experienced a 1.9% revenue increase, and the rest of the market would have increased by 4.6%."
Gartner, Inc. is the world's leading research and advisory company. The company helps business leaders across all major functions in every industry and enterprise size with the objective insights they need to make the right decisions. Gartner's comprehensive suite of services delivers strategic advice and proven best practices to help clients succeed in their mission-critical priorities. Gartner is headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut, U.S.A., and has more than 13,000 associates serving clients in 11,000 enterprises in 100 countries.