The world’s top 10 IC design companies would face headwinds this year, after most of them enjoyed revenue growth last year, market researcher TrendForce Corp (集邦科技) said on Feb. 27.
The top 10 IC design companies would be dragged down by numerous factors, such as a continued decline in smartphone growth, limited 5G penetration and low production and sales for foldable smartphones, TrendForce analyst Yao Chia-yang (姚嘉洋) said in a research note.
Chinese telecom giant Huawei Technologies Co (華為) is still taking a rather aggressive stance in the smartphone market, which is bound to limit the performance of other smartphone brands and hurt the performance of Qualcomm Inc and MediaTek Inc (聯發科) this year, Yao said.
TrendForce said its cautious outlook for the top 10 also reflects a potential decline in server demand and persistent weakness in the global car market, Yao said.
The researcher’s latest tallies showed that Broadcom Inc, Qualcomm and Nvidia Corp retained the top three places in the IC design business in terms of revenue.
MediaTek, Novatek Microelectronics Corp (聯詠) and Realtek Semiconductor Corp (瑞昱) ranked fourth, eighth and ninth.
Eight of the 10 largest IC design companies reported revenue growth last year, although several posted lower-than-expected revenue in the final quarter of the year, TrendForce said.
Qualcomm and MediaTek were the only two who saw revenue fall, the researcher said.
Qualcomm’s revenue declined 3.9 percent from 2017 to US$16.37 billion due to weak smartphone demand, while MediaTek’s revenue fell 0.7 percent to US$7.88 billion, but the decline was just 0.1 percent in New Taiwan dollar terms, it said.
Broadcom, Nvidia, Advanced Micro Devices Inc, Xilinx Inc, Novatek and Realtek reported revenue growth mainly thanks to steady growth momentum in end markets such as telecom infrastructure, data centers and TVs, TrendForce said.
At the same time, Marvell Technology Group Ltd and Dialog Semiconductor PLC saw revenue rise on the back of acquisitions, it said.
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