Electronics IP Industry - Q4 2011

The Electronics IP G5 Results for Calendar Q4 2011

We have just completed our first look at the individual performances of each member of the Group of Five (a.k.a. the G5) Electronics IP players for nominal Q4 2011.

Promised thereafter was a summary of the by-now-familiar Tables of Revenues and Profits of the entire G5, this time of course for Q4 2011 (and the four quarters leading up to Q4 2011), as well as some graphs of previous year-by-year P&L’s.

What follows, fulfils that promise!

First to Table 1 and the G5 IP Revenue Sum for Q4 2011:

$337.50 million!  The largest revenue number in Table 1, but not by much: just 3.3% more than the just-prior Q3 2011 G5 total and a weak 9% better than last year’s Q4. The sequential G5 increase this year was thanks to double-digit percentage growth in revenue from both ARM and CEVA, and to triple-digit percentage improvement from Mosys, to make up for still another revenue shortfall from MIPS and a huge 17% revenue decline by Rambus compared to Q3 2011 .

ARM continues to set the pace in a world of its own, and this quarter CeVA’s performance is noteworthy as well, passing MIPS in revenue in Q4 2011 for the number 3 slot among the G5 IP players, as predicted here last quarter.

Despite Rambus’ 17% sequential revenue shortfall in Q4, its revenue again placed Rambus second only to ARM, and at $83+ million, Rambus’ revenue is greater than the sum of the bottom three.

The revenue distinction among the five IP vendors continues, with two dominant vendors and three runners up. ARM’s strength is once more on display, with Rambus’ sinusoidal revenue still number two. While the business models of each these two vendors are dramatically different, together that “odd couple” again in Q4 2011 took more than seven-eighths of the IP revenue Sum, leaving less than an eighth to divide among the bottom three companies.

When one considers both Tables 1 and 2, ARM’s financials are indeed remarkable and serve as a model for all the G5 IP companies (or even for EDA and MCAD/MCAE vendors). Table 2 (below) reveals (a) that ARM’s net income again exceeded $50 million in Q4 2011, and (b) that ARM sports all black numbers across the top row of Table 2. Moreover, the bar graph labeled “ARMH Graph I” shows that 2011 is not a new phenomenon:

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