Making the AI Chip: the Upstream, Midstream, and Downstream Supply Chain
Click on the tabs at the top of the map to view different segments of the AI chip supply chain, from upstream to midstream to downstream. Toggle through the menu on the left to view the geographic distribution of different inputs in each stage of the supply chain. Click on highlighted areas of each map to view additional details like leading companies, market revenues, and political risk.
US Geological Survey; Marsh.
- All figures are in metric tons and are for 2019. The US figure for Boron is total export volume used as a proxy for production, as production is withheld to protect US companies' privacy. The Kazakhstan figure for Boron is for 2018 as 2019 figure is not available.
- High purity silicon is the main base material for all chips, including AI chips. Boron is a key dopant used in the production process of silicon wafers, which changes the features of the silicon according to specifications. Both silicon and boron are abundant globally with little supply risk.
- All political risk scores throughout are taken from Marsh and are based on Fitch BMI Research. The score, on a scale from 1 to 100, is an index that is composed of the average of several specific risk scores. A higher score means less risk (see more detailed methodology here).
IPNest 2019; The Information Network; Seeking Alpha; IC Insights; Market Research Reports; Yole Developpement; Deloitte (Chip Type); Vertex (Chip Type); PwC (Chip Type, Funding); Company Reports (Revenue); Crunchbase (Funding); Best Practice AI; ARK Investment Management; Shan Tang; CB Insights; Company websites.
- This midstream map reflects the global market share of leading companies in their respective segments, based on the country in which they are headquartered rather than the production that actually takes place in that particular country.
- Semiconductor core IP vendors: ARM Holdings is owned by Japan's Softbank.
- Semiconductor equipment manufacturers: These companies make up more than 80% of global market share of semiconductor manufacturing equipment. Many of these companies have global production facilities and operations from the United States to Europe and Asia, including China. The geographic dispersion reflects a highly globalized picture of SEM production, but it also makes it very difficult to determine the % of production capacity for each company physically located in respective countries. Therefore, we opted to show where each company is headquartered and its market share.
- Foundries: These include only pure foundries and not integrated device manufacturers (IDMs) like Intel and Samsung.
- OSATs: Global market share based on estimated total revenue of $65.7 billion for OSAT industry in 2018.
- Key AI Chip Players: Specific data on the AI chip industry is still scarce, so this portion of the map shows the location and size of the top 10 firms within the AI chip ecosystem.
IC insights; SIA; corporate websites.
- These are the 16 leading semiconductor suppliers in the world, which made up more than three-quarters of global semiconductor sales in 2019. The industry is highly competitive and increasingly fragmented. These companies fall under two basic operating models: IDMs, which are vertically integrated in terms of both chip design and fabrication (e.g. Intel and Samsung) and fabless design firms (e.g. Qualcomm and Broadcom) that contract major foundries like TSMC to make their chips. HiSilicon is the in-house design firm of China's Huawei, whose latest generation AI chip is fabricated by TSMC.
We will continue to update this map based on the best available data. In the meantime, we welcome user feedback and suggestions for improvement.