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Imagine getting through your everyday life without your phone, tablet, computer, or any number of today’s smart devices.
In an ever more connected world, we not only rely on these devices for socialization and entertainment, but also use them for our work, school, and gathering information. Truthfully, functioning without our modern technologies is practically unimaginable.
In most cases, these ever-important devices are powered by semiconductors—small chips that conduct electricity. Over the years, semiconductors have gotten more and more powerful, while also becoming cheaper and smaller.
They play an important role in not only powering our devices but also providing functioning AI (artificial intelligence). As time goes on, semiconductors are also being incorporated in cars and houses.
Along with the growth and innovation of new technologies, the companies producing semiconductors continue to grow at a steady rate.
Even with the many issues caused by COVID-19, semiconductor companies are expected to have a compound annual growth rate of at least 4-5% per year by 2027. That’s a predicted increase of almost 315 billion dollars compared to the total 2019 sales of these companies.
So who are the major companies producing these crucial devices? To answer that, we’ve gathered a list of the top 10 semiconductor companies across the world, based on their total revenue in 2020.
Intel (INTC) — Santa Clara, California, United States
Samsung Electronics — Yeongtong District, Suwon, South Korea
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) — Hsinchu Science Park, Taiwan
SK Hynix Inc. — Icheon, South Korea
Broadcom Corporation — Irvine, California, United States
Qualcomm — San Diego, California, United States
Micron Technology — Boise, Idaho, United States
Applied Materials — Santa Clara, California, United States
Nvidia Corporation — Santa Clara, California, United States
Texas Instruments Inc. — Dallas, Texas, United States
Detailed List of the 10 Largest Semiconductor Companies
2020 Revenue: $77.87 billion
Total Assets: $153.09 billion
Headquartered in California’s famed Silicon Valley, Intel is a massive semiconductor company with over 110,000 employees across 46 countries. The company was founded in 1968, and since then, has grown to become the largest revenue giant among the semiconductor companies.
When it comes to semiconductors, Intel is the developer of the x86 series of microprocessors, which are often found in laptops and other PCs. The company provides these microprocessors to major computer and technology companies, such as Lenovo, HP, and Dell.
Intel also produces more than just semiconductors, as some of the company’s predominant products include motherboard chipsets, network interface controllers, integrated circuits, flash memory, graphics chips, embedded processors, and more.
Since 2009, Intel has made over 31 worldwide acquisitions, which has landed them in the top 50 of the United States Fortune 500 list for the corporations by total revenue.
2020 Revenue: $52.2 billion
Total Assets: $304 billion
Founded in 1969, this South Korean electronics company is one of the largest producers of semiconductors in the world. Globally, the company employs almost 290,000 people and operates in 74 countries.
Samsung’s semiconductors are often used in smartphones and tablets, especially in the company’s line of Samsung Galaxy devices.
However, semiconductors aren’t the only product Samsung produces, as they also manufacture lithium-ion batteries, image sensors, and camera modules and displays, to name a few. For the most part, some of the company’s most prominent clients are Apple, Sony, HTC, and Nokia.
Overall, Samsung is the largest manufacturer of mobile phones and smartphones, making them an extremely relevant and important company in 2021.
2020 Revenue: $45.5 billion
Total Assets: $89.87 billion
As the world’s largest dedicated independent semiconductor factory, it’s no surprise that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) is one of the largest companies in Taiwan, and in the world.
This company has grown rapidly since 1994, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17.4% in revenue. Today, TSMC employs over 50,000 people and produces over 10 million semiconductor wafers per year.
The most prominent devices featuring TSMC’s semiconductors are Apple products, from the MacBook Air to the iPhone 12.
2020 Revenue: $25.27 billion
Total Assets: $56.08 billion
Specializing in the production of memory semiconductors SK Hynix Inc., formally known as Hyundai Electronics, is a South Korean company with locations in Korea, the United States, China, and Taiwan. In South Korea alone, the company employs over 22,000 people.
As mentioned, SK Hynix is a major producer of memory semiconductors, or memory chips. These memory chips have several major consumers, including Apple, Asus, Dell, and HP.
Additionally, the company manufactures other electronics as well, from DVD Players to cell phones.
2020 Revenue: $23.89 billion
Total Assets: $75.93 billion
Established in 1991, Broadcom is a public American company headquartered in Irvine, California. The company’s expertise in producing semiconductors ranges from computers to smartphones, and they produce for dozens of major companies.
Common clients include Apple, Motorola, IBM, Dell, Asus, Lenovo, Logitech, Nokia, and even Nintendo.
Much of the interest in Broadcom’s products stems from their chip’s ability to speed up tasks that utilize encryption. For many companies, these chips aid in e-commerce and secure communications.
Broadcom also produces the “BCM43″ series chips that specialize in providing WiFi support in many smartphones. Unlike other companies on this list, both Apple and Android devices utilize these chips.
2020 Revenue: $23.53 billion
Total Assets: $35.59 billion
Founded and Headquartered in Southern California, Qualcomm is a semiconductor company that also specializes in software and other wireless technologies.
Compared to other companies on this list, Qualcomm manufactures semiconductors for a very wide range of devices, from vehicles to watches, laptops to smartphones, and WiFi.
Qualcomm is known as a rather innovative company. In 2017, the company stepped out of its comfort zone to create its first PC server chip called Centriq 2400. The chip was a success, resulting in them expanding to manufacture more PC semiconductors and other electronics.
Qualcomm was one of the first to manufacture 5G technology as well, with over 20 mobile devices now utilizing the company’s 5G technology.
2020 Revenue: $21.43 billion
Total Assets: $53.68 billion
Micron Technology is the only Idaho-based semiconductor company on this list and specializes in manufacturing memory and data storage for computers. Currently, the company employs roughly 40,000 people and maintains 18 worldwide locations.
In the past two years, Micron released quite a few impressive products. In 2019, the company manufactured the first microSD card with a storage capacity of 1 terabyte (TB). In fact, as of 2020, Micron produces the largest SSD in the world: the 3.84TB Micron 5210 Ion.
2020 Revenue: $17.2 billion
Total Assets: $22.35 billion
Applied Materials is a Silicon Valley giant specializing in the production of semiconductors for electronics, computer displays, smartphones, televisions, and solar products. This American company was founded in 1967, and today employs over 20,000 employees.
In all likelihood, this company would be higher on this list if it weren’t for a scrapped 2013 merger with Tokyo Electron, which was the largest manufacturer of semiconductor equipment at the time.
Applied Materials not only specializes in manufacturing semiconductor chips but also supplies valuable equipment used to make the chips. For instance, the company’s equipment helps produce coatings for flexible electronics.
2020 Revenue: $14.78 billion
Total Assets: $26.88 billion
Also headquartered in California’s Silicon Valley, Nvidia is a unique semiconductor company specializing in graphics processing units (GPUs), that are especially useful for computer gaming.
The company’s GPU line, known as “GeForce” is the most popular graphics processor in the United States, and the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 Ti is currently the most powerful gaming GPU as well.
While gaming is one of Nvidia’s main markets, the company’s GPUs are also used in supercomputing sites around the world. More recently, the company has also provided processors for smartphones, vehicles, and other devices.
2020 Revenue: $14.46 billion
Total Assets: $19.35 billion
Texas Instruments (TI) is one of the oldest semiconductor companies on this list, being founded over 90 years ago in 1930. Today, the company has almost 30,000 employees, and mainly develops analog chips and embedded processors.
TI is a rather historic semiconductor company, producing the world’s first commercial silicon transistor, (1954), integrated circuit (1958), handheld calculator (1967), and DLP chip (1987).
In 2020, TI’s products are utilized in almost every electric device out there, making the company a vital indicator of the semiconductor industry’s health.
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