8 July 2010


Semi-insulating GaAs bulk substrate market defies recession

The slowdown in the gallium arsenide industry supply chain in the last quarter of 2008 extended through to first-half 2009. However, a robust recovery in second-half 2009 resulted in semi-insulating (SI) GaAs bulk substrates volumes still growing a recession-busting 10% year-on-year in 2009, driven by trends in next-generation cellular handset platforms, according to the report ‘Semi-insulating GaAs Substrate Markets: 2009-2014’ from the Strategy Analytics GaAs and Compound Semiconductor Technologies (GaAs) service.

In particular, Germany’s Freiberger Compound Materials GmbH (FCM) remained the leading merchant supplier of SI GaAs bulk substrates, accounting for 37% of the total merchant market.

Orders started to filter through in second-quarter 2009 as end-users looked to re-build stock levels. Strategy Analytics' models showed that by the end of the quarter the market started to see robust demand for materials and devices through the GaAs industry supply chain.

“The strong recovery was helped by an incumbent position in the overall power amplifier (PA) market for cellular terminals,” notes Asif Anwar of Strategy Analytics. “This was further helped with the RF front-end architectural requirements of next-generation handsets,” he adds.

“Next-generation handsets dictate an increase in the ratio of PAs per terminal as well as more complex switching requirements,” Anwar continues. “This helped the market for SI GaAs bulk substrates to maintain recession-defying growth in 2009. It will also underpin growth moving forward,” he concludes.

The report forecasts that volume demand will grow at a compound average annual growth rate (CAAGR) of 12% through 2014, with the market worth $217m, based on an examination of supply chain dynamics, coupled with an extensive analysis of end-demand drivers for SI GaAs bulk substrates.

See related item:

SI GaAs substrate market to shrink just 1% in 2009

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