Analysis of Competition between IDM and Fabless-Foundry Business Models in the Semiconductor Industry

Hui-Chih Hung*, Yu Chih Chiu, Muh-Cherng Wu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Three major business models are found in the semiconductor industry, namely, the integrated device manufacturer (IDM), fabless, and foundry models. IDMs design and manufacture integrated circuits (ICs), fabless companies focus only on IC design, and foundry companies are concerned only with IC manufacturing. The business model resulting when fabless and foundry companies form a strategic alliance is called the fabless-foundry model. Recently, the revenue growth rate of the fabless-foundry model has been considerably higher than that of IDM. This raises the question of whether the fabless-foundry model will ultimately dominate the semiconductor industry or grow only to a certain extent. To investigate this, we adopted the Hodrick-Prescott filter to remove the cyclic signal from original revenue data and then applied the Lotka-Volterra model to analyze the competition and cooperation relationships between pairs of these business models. The results reveal that the fabless and foundry models have a mutualistic relationship, whereas IDM competes with both the fabless and foundry models. IDM and the fabless-foundry model compete, but their revenues should ultimately arrive at an equilibrium point. In the long term, IDM and the fabless-foundry model should coexist; the ultimate market share of IDM is predicted to be approximately 55% and that of the fabless-foundry model approximately 45%.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7914779
Pages (from-to)254-260
Number of pages7
JournalIEEE Transactions on Semiconductor Manufacturing
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2017


  • Competition
  • cooperation
  • fabless
  • foundry
  • Hodrick-Prescott filter
  • IDM
  • Lotka-Volterra model
  • semiconductor supply chain


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