Design in China: Noticeable growth

IC design has been the fastest growing segment of China's semiconductor industry since 2000 and even grew during the 2008-2009 downturn thanks to booming demand for mobile devices

China's IC design enterprises by employee count, 2010 & 2011

China's IC design industry by process technology, 2010 & 2011

Integrated circuit (IC) design is the only segment of China’s semiconductor industry that achieved positive year-over-year (YoY) revenue growth for every year since 2000. Its revenue comes primarily from China’s indigenous fabless semiconductor companies, and it has been the fastest growing segment of China’s semiconductor industry since 2000 now constituting about 10% of the $74 billion worldwide fabless IC industry.

China’s IC design revenue growth of 36% in 2011 exceeded that of China’s IC manufacturing, IC packaging and testing, and even the much larger O-S-D sectors.

Driving demand were a series of domestic stimulus policies introduced by the government in 2009. The industry further benefitted from the seemingly endless demand for semiconductors used in cell phones as shipments of mobile handsets designed in China surged by nearly 60% in 2011.

In 2011 China reported its first billion dollar IC design company and two of the worldwide top five fastest growing IC design companies. In addition, by the end of 2011, 11 Chinese IC design companies had become publicly listed for a combined IPO funding of $1.2 billion.

History will validate whether this is the turning point in the development of the Chinese semiconductor industry and its IC design industry in particular.

Available chapters in this report

Article title Chapter
Market & industry overview Chapter 1
China's semiconductor industry Chapter 2
Design in China Chapter 3
Greater China: The bigger picture Chapter 4
Manufacturing: Growing capabilities Chapter 5
Government and production growth scenarios Chapter 6
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