Semiconductors are essential resources that are necessary for virtually all electronic devices, cutting-edge innovations, and key technologies like AI. Holding market caps of over $100 billion, many top semiconductor companies are among the world’s most valuable enterprises, leading the markets as tech and AI take over the world.

From the AI leader NVIDIA to the EUV lithography monopoly ASML, our experts at Business2Community listed the largest semiconductor companies by market cap, outlining their founding dates, business strategies, main products, and industry partnerships.

The World’s Biggest Semiconductor Companies

The semiconductor industry is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.64% between 2024 and 2033, due to the rise of generative AI, the Internet of Things, autonomous vehicles, and more.

Despite facing challenges in 2023, including chip shortages and US-China tensions, the industry’s long-term outlook remains positive, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association. The world’s semiconductor giants are aware of this, as they prioritize next-generation technologies and research and development.

Here are the top 10 largest semiconductor companies by market cap:

1. NVIDIA – $2.211 trillion

NVIDIA is not only the world’s largest semiconductor companies, but also the third-biggest enterprise by market cap, ranking only behind Microsoft and Apple. Founded in 1993 by Jensen Huang, Curtis Priem, and Chris Malachowsky, its mission was to introduce 3D graphics to the gaming and multimedia industries.

jensen huang nvidia cofounders

In 1999, NVIDIA invented GeForce 256, the world’s first GPU, or graphics processing unit. This GPU made 3D games like Doom possible after previous hardware struggled to run even the simplest kinds of games. NVIDIA spent most of its time as a gaming hardware company, powering millions of gamers’ computers for years and years. It still sells consumer GPUs to this day. However, its recent offerings in the sector have been deemed a bit lazy and it’s clear that the company’s focus has shifted elsewhere (and for good reason).

Besides gaming and rendering, GPUs are key for artificial intelligence and machine learning. NVIDIA was one of the first companies to pursue AI hardware, a vital move that would help it become an industry leader and one of the biggest companies in the world.

The company considers the start of its AI leadership to be in 2012 when computer scientist Alex Krizhevsky used NVIDIA GPUs to create AlexNet, a neural network trained to recognize images with deep learning. NVIDIA then gradually shifted into the AI space, forming partnerships with tech giants. In 2016, for example, it partnered with Microsoft to integrate its GPU technologies into Microsoft’s cloud and AI platform, Microsoft Azure.

By 2024, over 40,000 companies were using NVIDIA’s AI hardware and software products. The company’s Compute and Networking segment, which includes data center platforms, AI systems, and high-performance computing, made over $15 million in revenue in 2023, overtaking its Graphics segment. In 2024, NVIDIA generated a record quarterly revenue of $22.1 billion and a record fiscal year revenue of $60.9 billion, with its stock reaching a 52-week-high of $974.00 as of March 2024.

Bar graph showing NVIDIA's revenue segments between 2017 and 2024, with the highest segment being Compute & Networking from 2023 onwards

Company Name NVIDIA
Headquarters Santa Clara, California, USA
Market Cap $2.211 trillion
Founding Date 1993
Employee Count Over 25,000

2. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) – $708.75 billion

Founded in 1987 as the world’s first dedicated semiconductor company, TSMC has focused exclusively on manufacturing its customers’ products. This means that TSMC does not design, manufacture, or market products under its own name, ensuring it never competes with its customers. This made it possible to focus entirely on manufacturing and it was able to monopolize the sector with the help of the Taiwanese government.

The Taiwanese government has played a crucial role in the growth of TSMC, recognizing the potential of semiconductors early on.

A global leader in the semiconductor industry, TSMC’s Dedicated Integrated Circuits Foundry makes advanced semiconductors for diverse industries, including tech giants like Apple and Google. In 2023, the company manufactured 11,895 products, announced investment plans for a European Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, and continued building two fabs in Arizona. It made NT$2,161.736 billion (around $68.013 billion) in the 2023 fiscal year.

Company Name TSMC
Headquarters Hsinchu, Taiwan
Market Cap $708.75 billion
Founding Date 1987
Employee Count Over 70,000

3. Broadcom – $573.36 billion

According to Broadcom, 99% of all internet traffic crosses at least one Broadcom chip. With its roots dating back to 1961 and its subsidiary Broadcom Corporation starting in 1991, the company is the result of many mergers and acquisitions.

In 2016, Avago Technologies acquired Broadcom Corporation, forming the third-largest semiconductor maker by revenue. After the acquisition, Avago Technologies changed its name to Broadcom Inc., keeping Broadcom Corp. as a subsidiary.

Over the next decade, Broadcom continued strengthening its position in the semiconductor sector, notably with the 2018 acquisition of CA Technologies and the 2023 acquisition of VMWare. The latter stood out as one of the biggest deals in tech history, with Broadcom paying $61 billion in cash and stock.

Company Name Broadcom
Headquarters Palo Alto, California, USA
Market Cap $573.36 billion
Founding Date 1961
Employee Count Over 20,000

4. ASML – $371.44 billion

In 1984, electronic devices company Philips joined forces with Advanced Semiconductor Materials International to create lithography systems for the semiconductor market. Starting as ASM Lithography, ASML quickly grew thanks to Philips’ and ASMI’s investments. In 1995, it became an independent public company.

ASML describes itself as a supplier to the semiconductor industry, providing essential technology for chip manufacturers to produce semiconductors and chips. This is largely thanks to its Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) lithography tool, which it started developing in 2010. By using a shorter wavelength to manufacture smaller (microscopic) chip features, EUV lithography helps obtain smaller and more powerful chips.

Naturally, one of ASML’s biggest customers is TSMC. Without ASML’s extraordinarily complex lithography machines, TSMC would not be able to manufacture some of its most complex chips.

In 2016, ASML’s customers began ordering its first production-ready EUV lithography systems. As of 2024, ASML is a monopoly for EUV lithography components, with industry-leading semiconductor manufacturers relying on the company’s technology.

ASML’s 2023 revenue was €27.6 billion (around $29.90 billion). In the same year, it invested €4 billion (around $4.35 billion) in research and development. Committed to making even smaller chips and transistors, ASML aims to increase its R&D spend in the upcoming years.

Company Name ASML
Headquarters Veldhoven, Netherlands
Market Cap $371.44 billion
Founding Date 1984
Employee Count Over 40,000

5. Samsung – $363.21 billion

Besides producing consumer electronics like smartphones, TVs, and home appliances, Samsung also designs and manufactures semiconductors. Its semiconductor business started back in the 70s when it became the top black-and-white TV maker.

In the semiconductor industry, Samsung dominates the flash memory chips market, having produced the first NAND flash in 1999. By 2023, it held 31.4% of the NAND and 38.9% of the DRAM manufacturing market worldwide. Both NAND and DRAM are essential to developing SSDs or solid-state drives, which are among the most common storage drives.

Photo of a person holding a Samsung portable SSD TB

In 2023, Samsung made $39.9 billion from its semiconductor segment, which is around 20.57% of its total revenue of $194 billion.

Company Name Samsung
Headquarters Suwon-si, South Korea
Market Cap $363.21 billion
Founding Date 1938
Employee Count Over 250,000

6. Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) – $308.05 billion

AMD was launched as a Silicon Valley startup in 1969. Its first product was the Am9300, a general-purpose 4-bit MSI shift processor. As it scaled up, it built its high-performance CPU brand, Ryzen, and GPU brand, Radeon. It has long been the main competitor of NVIDIA in the consumer GPU space and Intel in consumer and enterprise CPUs.

The company expanded its portfolio with a series of strategic acquisitions, including Pensando for its data center product, for its AI software capabilities, and Xilinx for high-performance computing.

In the 2023 fiscal year, AMD generated $22.68 billion in revenue, with the data segment making up 37.29% of its quarterly revenue. Its next biggest segments were gaming, embedded, and clients, with the latter including sales generated from AMD products like Ryzen.

Company Name AMD
Headquarters Santa Clara, California, USA
Market Cap $308.05 billion
Founding Date 1969
Employee Count Over 25,000

7. Qualcomm – $186.28 billion

Qualcomm, or Quality Communications, was the joint project of seven Linkabit colleagues who wanted to create a visionary telecommunications company. Launched in 1985, the company helped define and commercialize 3G, 4G, and 5G wireless technology trends.

Its semiconductor manufacturing equipment operates under QCT, Qualcomm CDMA Technologies, which includes its Snapdragon processors and components used in handsets, automotive, and the Internet of Things. Handset was QCT’s biggest revenue segment in 2023, making $22.570 billion while automotive and IoT made $1.8 billion and $5.9 billion, respectively.

Another important part of Qualcomm’s business strategy is licensing, operated under QTL, Qualcomm Technology Licensing. QTL is responsible for the licensing of Qualcomm’s intellectual property portfolio, such as patent rights to manufacture and sell its wireless products. In 2023, QCT generated $30.382 billion and QTL $5.306 billion, becoming the company’s main revenue segments.

Bar graph showing Qualcomm's revenue segments worldwide between 2018 and 2023, with QCT having the highest share in all years

Company Name Qualcomm
Headquarters San Diego, California, USA
Market Cap $186.28 billion
Founding Date 1985
Employee Count Over 40,000

8. Intel – $180.57 billion

Intel started in 1968 when two entrepreneurs decided to build a semiconductor memory company, an emerging technology at the time. In 1971, Intel launched the world’s first programmable microprocessor, laying the foundation of the semiconductor industry and enabling the company’s further growth. In the next decade, IBM would choose Intel processors for its first personal computer, the IBM PC.

While Intel continued diversifying its products and services, Client Computing Group (CCG) remained its biggest business segment, generating over half of its 2023 revenue of $54.2 billion. CCG includes a wide range of products, such as CPUs, GPUs, chipsets, and adapters aimed at consumers, professionals, and businesses.

That said, the company has been investing in AI to strengthen its data center and AI segment. In 2024, Intel and Microsoft announced a collaboration, with Intel set to manufacture AI chips for Microsoft.

Company Name Intel
Headquarters Santa Clara, California, USA
Market Cap $180.57 billion
Founding Date 1968
Employee Count Over 124,000

9. Applied Materials – $166.78 billion

Provider of equipment, services, and software for semiconductor chips, Applied Materials started as a chemistry supply company in the 1960s. One of its early successes was Precision 5000, a machine that helped increase the efficiency of chip production.

Applied Materials expanded by acquiring other semiconductor companies, such as semiconductor control company Brooks Software and atomic layer deposition tech company Picosun. In 2009, it opened an advanced solar research facility in Xi’an, China, which became the world’s largest non-government solar energy research facility.

The company increased its investments in research and development year by year, reaching $3.1 billion in 2023. In the same year, it generated $26.52 billion in revenue, with semiconductor systems making up the majority of its sales.

Bar graph showing the net sale segments of Applied Materials between 2015 and 2023, with semiconductor segments having the highest share in all years

Company Name Applied Materials
Headquarters Santa Clara, California, USA
Market Cap $166.78 billion
Founding Date 1967
Employee Count Over 30,000

10. Texas Instruments (TI) – $153.99 billion

Texas Instruments designs and manufactures analog semiconductors and embedded processing chips. Founded in 1930, it has over 100,000 customers and 80,000 products under its belt. One of the company’s notable employees is Jack Kilby, the Nobel prize-winning inventor of the integrated circuit.

TI prides itself on its ability to manufacture semiconductors at lower costs while increasing quality and supply chain management over the years. This was possible thanks to the company’s strategic moves. For example, it acquired National Semiconductor in 2011 to grow its analog business. In 2021, it took over Micron Technology’s 300-mm semiconductor factory, which gave the company a cost advantage.

In the 2023 fiscal year, TI generated $17.52 billion in revenue, with analog semiconductors making up 74% of its earnings.

Company Name Texas Instruments
Headquarters Dallas, Texas, USA
Market Cap $153.99 billion
Founding Date 1930
Employee Count Over 30,000

Top 10 Semiconductor Companies in the USA

Seven US and three foreign companies rank in the top 10 global semiconductor industry enterprises. This makes the US one of the most important countries in the market, and puts the spotlight on its companies with the highest market cap:

  1. NVIDIA – $2.211 trillion: The largest semiconductor company in the US and the world, focusing on AI computing.
  2. Broadcom – $573.36 billion: Known for its historic acquisitions, such as the $69 billion VMware purchase, one of the biggest acquisitions in tech history.
  3. AMD – $308.05 billion: A strong company in central and graphic processing units with its Ryzen and Radeon series.
  4. Qualcomm – $186.28 billion: Creator of Snapdragon processors, used in over 100 devices.
  5. Intel – $180.57 billion: Founder of the world’s first programmable microprocessor.
  6. Applied Materials – $166.78 billion: A global leader in materials engineering solutions used for the production of new chips and advanced displays.
  7. Texas Instruments – $153.99 billion: One of the oldest semiconductor companies and the founder of the integrated circuit.
  8. Lam Research – $120.09 billion: Leading company in semiconductor manufacturing equipment, including thin film deposition and plasma etch.
  9. Micron Technology – $101.79 billion: The third-largest DRAM supplier worldwide.
  10. Analog Devices – $93.77 billion: Manufacturer of over 75,000 analog and mixed-signal semiconductor products worldwide.

Learning from the Biggest Semiconductor Companies in the World

The world’s largest semiconductor companies are known to make strategic acquisitions, invest in emerging technologies as well as R&D, and stay competitive in the industry.

AMD’s 2022 acquisition of Xilinx was strategically aimed at expanding its high-performance computing capabilities, which will be of higher importance in the next decade. This long-term investment already began paying off a year after the acquisition, as AMD reported a 17% revenue increase in its embedded segment. Shortly after Xilinx, AMD purchased Pensando, investing further into its strongest segment, the data center.

Semiconductors are at the heart of today’s technology, which develops and changes quickly. Thus, semiconductor companies are heavily investing in research and development. The world’s EUV lithography monopoly ASML hires technical experts, systems engineers, and managers to work at its R&D branch, investing over $4 billion in building next-generation chips. Similarly, NVIDIA had a research spend of over $8 billion in its 2024 fiscal year, exploring artificial intelligence, computer vision, HPC, robotics, and more. The company’s R&D investments increased consistently every year:

Bar graph showing NVIDIA's Research & Development expenses between 2017 and 2024, increasing every year

Manufacturer of OpenAI‘s chips, NVIDIA started working in artificial intelligence as early as 2012. By 2024, its investments paid off, as it has become one of the biggest firms worldwide. While NVIDIA worked on AI and machine learning, Intel, AMD, and other competitors were left behind. However, Intel is slowing starting to fight back. It launched a new foundry in 2024, aiming to catch up and become the world’s leading AI chipmaker. The new foundry got Intel a $15 billion deal with Microsoft, suggesting that staying up-to-date with emerging technologies is crucial no matter how early or late it may be.


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