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Global Semiconductor Revenue Grew Less than 2 Percent in 2011

Worldwide semiconductor revenue grew 1.8 percent to $306.8 billion in 2011, although five of the top 10 semiconductor manufacturers suffered sales declines in 2010, according to researcher Gartner Inc.

In terms of revenue growth rates, QUALCOMM and Intel led the pack. Intel, the largest semiconductor company, grew revenue 20.7 percent to $50.6 billion in 2011 as its market share grew to 16.5 percent compared to 16.3 percent in 2010, Gartner reported. QUALCOMM posted 38.8 percent sales growth as its revenue increased to nearly $10 billion. QUALCOMM is the sixth largest semiconductor company.

Toshiba, Texas Instruments, STMicroelectronics, Hynix Semiconductor, and Micron all suffered revenue declines in 2011.

Samsung, the second largest semiconductor manufacturer, was impacted by weak demand and falling prices for DRAMs in 2011. It grew sales just 1 percent to $27.3 billion. Toshiba and Texas Instruments retained their third- and fourth-place rankings. Toshiba’s revenue dropped 4.8 percent to $11.76 billion, while Texas Instruments sales declined .6 percent to $11.75 billion, according to the researcher.

Renesas Electronics moved into the top five with sales of $10.6 billion as its revenue grew 4.8 percent in 2011.

Of the major semiconductor segments, microcomponents, including microprocessors, performed best in 2011, said Peter Middleton, principal research analyst at Gartner. Computer microprocessor revenue grew 14.2 percent year over year because of strong average selling prices, he said. Processor growth was driven by servers and PCs.

Broadcom posted healthy 8.4 percent growth to increase its sales to $7.1 billion in 2011. The company's mobile and wireless division posted double-digit growth.