ST improves international ranking
STMicroelectronics is poised to improve its ranking to fifth in the
top 10 list of semiconductor suppliers worldwide, according to the annual
ranking exercise conducted by Arizona-based market research company,
The forecast for 2001 indicates that the Europe-based STMicroelectronics
is expected to register sales amounting to 6.3 billion dollars, which
is a 19 per cent decline over sales registered in 2000. Despite the
slump STMicroelectronics still climbed two places from last years
seventh place ranking.
The top 10 list shows that all semiconductor suppliers registered massive
declines in sales ranging from Intels 23 per cent to a huge 52
per cent drop registered by Samsung.
STMicroelectronics decline is forecast to be the smallest among
the top 10 suppliers. In 1999 STMicroelectronics ranked eighth in world
wide semiconductor sales.
The forecast by IC Insights comes as good news for the Maltese economy,
which is heavily dependent on STMicroelectronics production plant
in Kirkop. The decline in exports by the Kirkop branch was the main
factor behind Maltas negative GDP growth for six consecutive months.
The Malta Financial and Business Times can reveal that in a recent meeting
held for company employees, the top management informed workers that
the Kirkop plant was expected to come out of the slump sometime during
the second or third quarter of 2002.
The Malta plant has implemented a number of cost-cutting measures in
line with STMicrolecetronics worldwide policy. Sources told this
newspaper that the savings registered by the Maltese plant were better
than most ST plants in other parts of the world.
The total sales of the top 10 semiconductor producers are forecast to
drop 32 per cent in 2001, equalling the decline in the worldwide semiconductor
The top three positions were unchanged from 2000. The US based Intel
came first with sales for 2001 projected to reach 22.7 billion dollars
despite a decline of 23 per cent on the previous year.
Japanese giants Toshiba and NEC came second and third respectively.
Toshiba projects 7.2 billion dollars in sales while NEC expects to register
6.9 billion dollars. The figures represent a decline of 35 per cent
over the sales registered in 2000.
The fourth position is occupied by US-based Texas Instruments, which
climbed up one place.
Koreas Samsung in sixth place slipped two positions in the ranking
with projected sales for 2001 standing at 5.1 billion dollars. Samsung
registered the biggest drop in sales among the top 10 companies.
US-based Motorola is ranked seventh with 4.9 billion dollars in sales
while Japans Hitachi retained its eighth ranking with 4.7 billion
dollars in sales.
The ninth and tenth ranks are occupied respectively by European companies
Infineon and Philips. Philips made it to the top 10 list after jumping
IC Insights expects the 2002 semiconductor market to increase by only
one per cent over 2001. But the quarterly growth rate is forecast to
exceed 10 per cent in the third and fourth quarters of 2002.