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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

World Semiconductor Industry Revenues Pass $168Bln in 1999

SAN JOSE, California -- Revenues for the worldwide semiconductor industry grew 22 percent in 1999, exceeding the growth rate previously indicated by preliminary data and breaking the record revenue level set in 1995, according to an industry report issued Monday by Dataquest Inc.

Semiconductor revenues reached a record level of $168.6 billion, up from $138.7 billion in 1998, according to final survey results from the research group, which is a unit of Gartner Group Inc.

Revenues in 1999 broke the previous record of $151.3 billion set in 1995.

Growth is being driven by the increasing demand for Internet-related communications devices along with increased demand for DRAM, or dynamic random access memory, chips that are primarily used in the main memories of computers.

"The memory market made a big comeback, fueled by the revival in DRAM, which grew 46 percent in 1999, and the shortage of flash capacity," said Joe D'Elia, director of Dataquest's European Semiconductor Research.

The shortage of capacity for flash memory, which is used in small, hand-held appliances such as cell phones and personal Internet access appliances, became apparent in the first quarter of 1999.

Intel Corp. remained in the No. 1 industry position with revenues of $26.8 billion, $1 billion more than preliminary data had indicated and up from $22.8 billion in 1998.

Intel's revenues were nearly three times those of the semiconductor operations of No. 2 NEC Corp. of Japan, which had $9.2 billion in revenues, unchanged from preliminary data and up from $7.9 billion in 1998. Intel had 15.9 percent of the market and NEC had 5.5 percent.

Dataquest's Asia/Pacific region, which excludes Japan, posted the strongest growth in revenues, up nearly 33 percent. Revenue growth was nearly 25 percent in Japan. The Americas showed just over 18 percent growth and Europe nearly 13 percent.

The Americas region continued to produce the most revenue, accounting for yearly 33 percent of worldwide semiconductor revenue in 1999. Asia/Pacific was No. 2 with 25 percent of the market, followed by Japan with just over 22 percent and Europe with nearly 20 percent.