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Asian Companies Increase Chip Buying at Higher Rate than Global OEMs


While Apple Inc. is the leading purchaser of semiconductors among global OEMs, Asian- based companies are increasing their chip buying at a higher rate in the Asia-Pacific region, according to researcher IHS.

Semiconductor purchasing among original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) headquartered in the Asia-Pacific region is expected to rise by an average of 6 percent in 2012, the researcher reported. In contrast, chip purchasing growth for all global OEMs is set to average only about 2.5 percent for the year.

The fastest growth will be generated by Taiwan’s HTC Corp. at 23 percent. Furthermore, for all OEMs buying chips in Asia-Pacific, three indigenous companies will post the fastest growth: HTC, ZTE Corp. of China; and TCL Corp., another company based in China.

“Local companies have led, are leading, and will lead the Asia-Pacific region in semiconductor spending growth, not the larger OEMs headquartered elsewhere, such as Apple, Hewlett-Packard Co. and Dell Inc.,” said Myson Robles-Bruce, senior analyst for semiconductor spending and design activity at IHS. He noted that this is significant because Asia-Pacific is the largest global region for chip purchasing and is “set to outperform the rest of the world in coming years.”

Apple is leading the global chip buying companies in growth and size worldwide during 2012, giving it enormous advantages in terms of component supply and pricing. However, the Asia-Pacific players are playing to their home-field advantage, wielding in Asia the same kind of influence that Apple now enjoys globally.

The forecast for 2013 shows overall semiconductor purchasing for the Asia-Pacific region will rise by 9.4 percent. However, looking only at local companies headquartered in the region, this growth rate becomes significantly higher, increasing to 15.5 percent for the year.

“The phenomenon of domestic OEMs increasing their Asia-Pacific chip spending at a faster rate than their global rivals represents a consistent long-term trend,” Robles-Bruce said. “This trend has persisted regardless of whether overall growth rates for Asia Pacific semiconductor spending have increased or decreased.”

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