Research firm Gartner on April 14 released its list of the world’s leading chip vendors, which sees HiSilicon, a Chinese fabless semiconductor company wholly owned by Huawei, slipping out from the top 25.
Andrew Norwood, research vice president at Gartner, said, “HiSilicon’s revenue declined 81%, from 8.2 billion dollars in 2020 to 1.5 billion dollars in 2021.”
He added, “This was a direct result of the U.S. sanctions against the company and its parent company Huawei.”
Norwood continued, “This also impacted China’s share of the semiconductor market as it declined from 6.7% share in 2020 to 6.5% in 2021. South Korea had the largest increase in market share in 2021 as strong growth in the memory market propelled South Korea to garner 19.3% of the global semiconductor market.”
While HiSilicon is losing its position, its competitors are enjoying substantial growth. HiSilicon’s competitors, the U.S.’s Qualcomm and Taiwan’s MediaTek, both gained sharply, with 53.4% and 60.2%, respectively.
Following the U.S. sanctions, HiSilicon has been impeded from continuing production contacts with partners such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), which relies on key U.S. technologies to make their wafers.
The rankings come just weeks after Huawei declared its worst-ever yearly sales figures. According to the South China Morning Post, while HiSilicon is struggling, Huawei has not confirmed any large-scale layoffs at the company. But the outlet noted other mainland IC design firms are looking to recruit HiSilicon employees.
Citing sources, SCMP reported that a number of those from the company have already left to work at Zeku, the smartphone manufacturer Oppo’s chip design unit in Shanghai.