Infineon, ST rise in strong industrial chip market

September 25, 2019 //By Peter Clarke
Infineon, ST rise in strong industrial chip market
The US and Europe continue to dominate the ranking of leading industrial chip vendors occupying the top ten places in 2018 according to market analysis firm IHS Markit. Despite increasing sales by 11 percent year-on-year Intel managed to drop two places being overtaken by Infineon and STMicroelectronics.

Texas Instruments achieved 9 percent annual growth in its industrial semiconductor sales to retain its position as the number one supplier in 2018. TI is followed by Analog Devices, Infineon and STMicroelectronics making up a top four. But the highest Asian supplier is Renesas Electronics Corp. ranked 11.

Asian semiconductor manufacturers have tended to go after high volume markets – such as consumer and mobile communications – where they can make relatively few types of chip in high volumes and compete on economies of scale and price.

However, the lower volume higher diversity and higher value industrial chip market grew strongly in 2018 on demand generated by a plethora of new applications. The market expanded 10.8 percent to reach $52 billion in 2018.

Top 20 vendors of industrial semiconductors ranked by 2018 sales. Source: IHS Markit.

Fast-growing applications for industrial chips in 2018 included networking devices, commercial and military aircraft, LED lighting, digital signage, digital video surveillance, climate control, smart meters, traction, photovoltaic (PV) inverters and human-machine interface systems. Various types of medical electronic devices also helped propel growth, such as hearing aids, endoscopy and imaging systems.

The industry is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.8 percent through 2023. This is a drop on the equivalent figure given by IHS-Markit last year of a CAGR over the period 2017 to 2022 of 7.1 percent.

The roll out of LED lighting, increased digitization of power electronics and industrial applicatons are having an impact. “Within the industrial semiconductor business, the markets for general-purpose analog ICs and optical semiconductors delivered stellar performances in 2018,” said Noman Akhtar, analyst, industrial semiconductors and sensors at IHS Markit Technology.

Microcontrollers (MCUs) for industrial applications are also projected to experience broad-based growth in the long term, thanks to advances in digitalization, power efficiency, connectivity and other features.

The combination of Analog Devices with Linear Technology had a positive effect as it


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