SAN FRANCISCO — Concerned about the sluggish pace of revenue growth, industry leaders see less momentum for a sustained semiconductor recovery in 2014 than they did a year ago, according to this year’s Global Semiconductor Industry Survey from KPMG, a financial services and consulting firm.
"There was a lot of momentum, excitement a year ago for how the industry would turn out in 2013," Gary Matuszak, global chair of KPMG’s technology, media, and telecommunications practice, said in an interview with EE Times. "This year the index is a somewhat muted expectation in that it’s the same year over year," he said.
KPMG surveyed 193 semiconductor industry business leaders to create this year's Industry Confidence Index, which remains flat at 57, indicating a slightly positive perception. The index is formed by five factors: capital spending change, R&D spending change, profitability spending change, workforce change, and semiconductor revenue growth.
The index increased from 46 to 57 in the 2012 survey. Overall revenue growth predictions were fairly consistent this year, with 77% of executives expecting increases compared to 75% the previous year.
"What we saw is a lot more revenue increase [expectations] in the 6 to 10 percent range as opposed to last year," Matuszak said, adding that there was an 8% decrease in those expecting revenue growth of more than 10%. "The calibration of those increases is coming down year over year," he said.
Reductions in higher revenue growth predictions, coupled with higher percentages of respondents expecting modest growth, reflect the industry’s trend into a mix of broader applications and geographic markets. This results "in less volatility combined with a slowing growth rate for mobile devices," a KPMG release stated.
Seventy-seven percent of executives expect increases in revenue growth next year, compared to 75% the previous year. "What we saw is a lot more revenue increase in 6 to 10 percent [growth] range as opposed to last year," a KPMG official said.
"There is continued heavy reliance and top growth still continuing to come from wireless as well as the consumer side," Matuszak said. "Where we've seen the relative increases is in other applications markets [such as] alternative or renewable energy, automotive and medical devices," he said.