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Semiconductor sales rise

IDC warns of consolidation

Global semiconductor revenue is expected to rise at faster and force bigger chipmakers to acquire smaller rivals to increase their market share, according to bean counters at research outfit  IDC.

In an industry report, IDC predicts that revenue may expand by between six percent and seven percent this year. Global semiconductor sales rose 3.7 percent to $301 billion in 2011, as orders for chips used in wireless devices offset declining revenue for computing-related chips, IDC said.

But it thinks all this will coase nergers and acquisitions among chipmakers will continue. Already Qualcomm bought Atheros and Texas Instruments took over National Semiconductor. But IDC thinks that industry consolidation may allow bigger chipmakers to offer products that are used in a wider range of applications.

Large companies with strong cash balances will vie for competitive positions, mergers and acquisitions will be a key theme, IDC said.  The report named Intel, Samsung, Texas Instruments, Toshiba and Renesas  as the world’s five biggest chipmakers last year.  So no real surprises there.

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