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Renesas tops, while Freescale slips

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Renesas Electronics overcame the challenges of the March 2011 Tohoku Pacific coast earthquake in Japan, that had disrupted key front end fabrication operations, in order to retain a 14 percent market share in the automotive semiconductor market—four percent ahead of its nearest rivals, according to the Strategy Analytics Automotive Electronics service report, “Automotive Semiconductor Vendor 2011 Vendor Market Shares.” At the same time, Freescale lost its number three automotive position to ST Microelectronics.After the Tohoku Pacific coast earthquake, strenuous Renesas Electronics recovery efforts to restart key automotive semiconductor front end manufacturing plants helped minimize damage to 2011 revenues. Renesas lost some ground to rivals, but in the end retained its number one position, with sales of just over $3 billion.The year 2011 brought particularly strong growth in demand for power analog semiconductors. This assisted major power analog semiconductor supplier ST Microelectronics to overtake digital semiconductor biased Freescale. According to analysis from Strategy Analytics, automotive semiconductor vendor annual revenues increased 11 percent to $23 billion in 2011.The top five semiconductor vendors for 2011 are nowRenesasInfineonSTMicroelectronicsFreescaleNXPAccording to Chris Webber, Vice President of the Strategy Analytics Global Automotive Practice, “Automotive semiconductor vendors faced a variety of major regional challenges to demand growth in 2011, including the Japan earthquake, the Euro-zone debt crisis and floods in Thailand. Nevertheless, these vendors turned in healthy double digit revenue growth. This highlights the strategic value of semiconductors in the automotive sector, where electronics penetration into vehicles is set to drive semiconductor demand even further over the next five years and beyond.”

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