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Compound semiconductor market still floundering

Despite some revenue growth, the GaAs, GaN, SiC and SiGe markets are suffering at the expense of a stronger silicon market

With financial results in for the second calendar quarter of 2012, the compound semiconductor industry showed sequential revenue growth, but the industry is only slightly ahead of 2011 revenue performance.

This is according to Strategy Analytics' GaAs and Compound Semiconductor Technologies Service (GaAs) viewpoint, "Compound Semiconductor Industry Review July - September 2012: Microelectronics."

While most of the companies highlighted in the report showed sequential revenue increases from the previous quarter, many are struggling in comparison to 2011 revenue. The result is an industry much closer to breakeven than substantive growth.

The report also details several silicon-based product announcements for devices that are directly competitive to their compound semiconductor equivalents.

"The positive news for the compound semiconductor industry is that most companies showed revenue growth for the quarter, making it the second consecutive quarter that the industry has seen growth", notes Eric Higham, Director of the Strategy Analytics GaAs and Compound Semiconductor Technologies Service (GaAs). "However, when you compare the results to 2011, the picture is not as clear. Using this comparison, many of these same companies are struggling to show growth and this reaffirms our position that 2012 will be a low-growth year for the industry".

Asif Anwar, Director, Strategy Analytics Strategic Technologies Practice adds, "Part of the issue is the strength of some of the silicon-based product solutions. We are seeing companies like Javelin and Amalfi Semiconductor, which is now part of RFMD along with Peregrine Semiconductor, release some very innovative products that are taking share away from the incumbent compound semiconductor devices".

This viewpoint summarises financial, product, contract and employment developments from leading semiconductor device suppliers from July - September of 2012. These announcements address a variety of commercial and military applications products and companies that use GaAs, GaN, SiC, SiGe and complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) silicon technologies.       
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