Recently, the world's leading semiconductor supplier STMicroelectronics (hereinafter referred to as ST) announced the third quarter earnings report, ST in the third quarter achieved net revenue of 2.52 billion US dollars, gross margin of 39.8%, operating profit margin of 15.8%, net profit of 369 million USD, diluted earnings per share of $0.41. ST President and CEO Jean-Marc Chery commented on the third quarter results, ST said that once again handed over a solid quarterly report, sales of imaging products, power discrete devices and automotive products grew strongly, driving revenue growth year-on-year 18.1%, operating profit and net profit increased significantly year-on-year.
As a diversified semiconductor manufacturer, ST's products are used in many electronic applications. At ST's CEO media exchange, Jean-Marc Chery once again emphasized that the company focuses on four major end markets - automotive, industrial, personal electronics. Products and communications equipment, computers and peripherals, the Chinese market is very critical and important for ST.
The potential of the four terminal markets is huge
On the one hand, with the slowdown in the growth of the global semiconductor market, the market has entered a cooling period, and the supply and demand situation of mobile phones and memory chips has stabilized; on the other hand, the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence and cloud computing have brought new to the semiconductor market. Growth points, opportunities and challenges coexist. Jean-Marc Chery said that the company's focus on automotive, industrial, personal electronics and communications equipment, computers and peripherals, these markets will grow in the next few years, such as the industrial sector, is expected to compound annual growth rate in the next three years is 7%, of which the growth of the industrial market is mainly driven by the Internet of Things; in the automotive market, with the electrification of automobiles and advanced driver assistance systems, the demand for automotive semiconductors is increasing; in the personal electronics market, With the continuous adoption of new semiconductor devices, the communications equipment, computer and peripheral markets are also great opportunities for ST, such as hard drives and 5G infrastructure.
The market is a key element in testing products and technology, and ST adopts an application-centric market strategy focused on the Internet of Things and smart driving. Jean-Marc Chery mentioned that ST offers not only products and technologies, but also application and system functions, allowing customers to quickly bring products to market and have more innovation. Nearly 30% of ST's sales and marketing staff are application engineers, and the company is able to provide products, technologies and ecosystems to help customers design and accelerate time-to-market.
Extensive technology portfolio and collaborative innovation
Despite the fierce competition in the upstream market of semiconductors, each company's business strategy is different, ensuring their market position. Jean-Marc Chery said that the success of ST can be attributed to several factors. The first is a combination of technologies. The company has a very broad technology portfolio that is fully aligned with the end market and applications. ST's strategy is to selectively invest in core patented technologies and differentiated technologies to provide customers with significant added value. Taking silicon carbide as an example, ST began investing in silicon carbide a few years ago. Currently, the company is the only supplier of high-capacity silicon carbide MOSFETs for automotive-grade systems, such as main converters and car chargers. ST works with industry leaders to bring breakthrough innovations to the automotive market. The company has more than 30 silicon carbide projects with automakers and Tier 1 suppliers, and is expected to target automotive and industrial sectors by 2025. The silicon carbide market will reach a market size of $3 billion.
"ST has six product lines and is one of the industry's most extensive product portfolios, such as specialty automotive chips, discrete devices and power transistors; analog devices, industrial chips and power conversion chips; MEMS, dedicated image sensors and digital ASICs. General purpose microcontrollers, secure microcontrollers and EEPROM memory, etc., said Jean-Marc Chery.
ST's strategy for the four major markets
Through ST's third-quarter earnings report, the company's overall performance has maintained strong growth, while operating margins and earnings per share have also increased. Jean-Marc Chery said that in all product portfolios, the company's revenue is very balanced, and it performs very well in some areas, such as imaging, simulation, discrete devices, automotive products, etc. It is estimated that the company's overall revenue for the whole year of 2018 Will reach a year-on-year growth rate of 16%.
First, ST's strategy for the automotive market
For the automotive market, ST has differentiated expertise and automotive subsystem optimization solutions for automotive chip development, and has established partnerships with complete vehicles, Tier 1 suppliers and leading technology companies. ST has a strong internal production capacity to provide high quality products and supply guarantees. Jean-Marc Chery said that ST has established partnerships with many Chinese manufacturers, such as ST and Changan Automobile to jointly create a joint laboratory to develop body, in-vehicle infotainment systems, power systems and safety applications to meet the local automotive electronics market. Development needs; and a joint lab built by ST and Great Wall Motors, which focuses on powertrain, chassis, safety, body, automotive entertainment, new energy technologies and other cutting-edge solutions for automotive applications. Jean-Marc Chery continues to say that ST also has cooperation with well-known domestic companies such as Huada Beidou and Weifu Hi-Tech.
In recent years, new energy vehicles have developed rapidly, and many countries around the world are actively promoting the development of the industry. ST has been supporting the development of electric and hybrid vehicles in China, which is part of the “Made in China 2025” initiative. ST and the Institute of Microelectronics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Zhongke Core Times jointly developed an electric vehicle battery management system, using ST's most advanced intelligent power technology and SPC5x automotive microcontrollers. In order to meet the market's requirements for performance, quality and reliability, the three parties have cooperated closely with Chinese battery manufacturers and car companies to launch battery controller solutions. The samples have been completed.
As a leader in the industry, there must be a very clear market strategy. Jean-Marc Chery said that as a leader in multi-generation technology, ST relies on traditional applications to increase revenue while enhancing consumer loyalty. In the future, ST hopes to better understand the market. Trends and forecast market demand for a smarter, greener, connected smart driving experience.
Second, ST's industrial market strategy
The industrial sector is a relatively fragmented market, ranging from large companies to small and medium-sized enterprises. ST's industrial applications include factory automation, motor control, industrial drive power, tools, power generation, power distribution, measurement, LED lighting, urban automation, Buildings, appliances, medical, aerospace and defense. With the introduction of "Made in China 2025", it puts higher demands on machines, factory automation, workshop efficiency, intelligence level, interconnection and so on, which also requires ST products to be more intelligent and safe.
According to Jean-Marc Chery, ST can provide smarter, more secure products. ST's sensors can monitor environmental and machine-specific parameters. The microcontroller can provide more secure embedded processing functions and complete local data analysis. It can initiate local operations and remote connections; ST's connection technology enables tighter interconnection with the environment and the cloud, and flexible security solutions that help customers respond and adjust to external events in real time; ST's high-end analog technology, power management IC Power transistors, modules, diodes and other protection features ensure optimum efficiency of the entire energy source. "ST also has application-related chips to help with motor control and automation. In-line current blocking, dispersion intelligence and decentralized diagnostics can effectively increase the efficiency of motor loading and ensure system robustness, reliability and consistency. "Jean-Marc Chery added. For new products for industrial applications, ST is also increasing its investment in these markets, such as power adapters, 3D printing, medical imaging, robotics, etc. Among them, ST has already launched related industrial-grade chips for the factory automation market, currently with Emerson. Companies such as Siemens, TCL, Midea, and Nidec have conducted in-depth cooperation.
Third, ST's strategy for the personal electronic product market
The volume of the personal electronics market is very large, and ST naturally will not miss this market. Jean-Marc Chery said that for the personal electronics market, ST is selective, choose the right market to launch the corresponding products and solutions, ST's main focus is on smartphones, and will also support some consumer-grade electronics, such as Game consoles and wearable devices; ST's personal electronic chips, low-power microcontrollers, wireless charging, secure payment, etc., can truly respond to customers' use in various scenarios. ST has already reached in-depth cooperation with many well-known mobile phone manufacturers in China. .
Taking consumer electronics as an example, Jean-Marc Chery said that the daily use of electronic products such as smart watches, small screens, mid-screen, large-screen mobile phones, game consoles, etc., many products embedded with a large number of ST solutions, such as flying Time, MEMS, pressure sensors, etc., I believe that the future ST will bring more corresponding products and technical solutions.
Fourth, ST's strategy for the communications equipment, computer and peripheral markets
For the communications equipment, computer and peripheral markets, ST adopts a strategy similar to the personal electronics market. ST places great emphasis on selecting customers and product opportunities, leveraging rich, professional knowledge and developing differentiated product portfolios with differentiated technologies. Jean-Marc Chery mentioned that ST has approximately 18,000 employees and six technology R&D/IC design centers in the Asia Pacific region.
ST has been deeply involved in the Chinese market for many years and has established very close cooperation with many key partners, especially in the field of Internet of Things, such as ST and Alibaba in the field of Internet of Things, ST has established a complete Internet of Things application. The software ecosystem, including operating systems, security and connectivity, combines AliOS nodes into a cloud-to-cloud vertical solution and a diverse portfolio of ST IoT technologies.
China is the fastest growing and most dynamic market for ST
As one of the world's most widely used semiconductor applications, China has a very important position in the global market. Currently, China is promoting technological innovation in all its end products. In China, ST has 5,500 employees, including supply chain, R&D, product support, sales, marketing, manufacturing, etc. ST has set up technology centers in Shanghai and Shenzhen to enhance its design capabilities in China.
Jean-Marc Chery emphasizes that China is the fastest growing and most dynamic market for ST. Many entrepreneurs and startups are important partners of ST. They are a very important source of income for the company, whether it is OEM or distributor. They have a very solid cooperative relationship with ST. China has a well-developed youth talent education and training infrastructure. ST has established cooperative relationships with many universities in China to cultivate engineers together.