Bishop & Associates has tracked the connector industry since 1980, 34 years. In 1980, annual connector sales were $8.9 billion, growing to $55.4 billion in 2014. This is a 34 year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.5%. During this period, the ten largest connector companies achieved a CAGR of 6.7% which is significantly better than the overall industry.

Top Ten versus Industry

Since 1980, the top ten steadily have increased their share of the total market. In 1980, the top ten accounted for 38.0% of the industry. Today, the top ten accounts for 56.8% of world connector demand.

Top 10 Share of World Market

table-1

Logically, one would expect the ten largest companies to grow faster than the overall industry. After all, the largest companies have significant advantages over their smaller competitors.

  • More engineers
  • Larger sales and marketing organizations
  • More manufacturing plants located in all geographic regions
  • Greater financial resources

The results of these advantages is a broader product offering and a global presence with the ability to serve the world’s largest OEMs.

Certainly, some of the top ten market share growth can be attributed to size. However, the reality is most of the share growth is the result of acquisitions. For example:

  • TE Connectivity acquired Thomas & Betts connector business, Deutsch, ADC and numerous other companies.
  • Molex acquired Woodhead, FCT, Affinity Medical, Luxtera’s Merge Optics and others.
  • Amphenol acquired Teradyne’s high speed connector business, FEP and a few dozen other companies. Amphenol recently announced that they will acquire FCI’s connector business. This transaction is expected to close in December, 2015.
  • Delphi acquired FCI’s automotive interconnect business.

In total, we estimate that the top ten added over $4.0 billion in sales through acquisitions. Further we believe this is why the top ten achieved a 6.7% CAGR from 1980 to 2014 versus industry growth of 5.5%.

Top Ten Share of Market

table-2

The top ten connector companies are shown below with each company’s share of 2014 world sales.

2014 Top 10 Market Share

table-3

Highlights of the above table are:

  • Top ten have over half of the world connector demand (56.8%).
  • TE Connectivity is the 800 pound gorilla in the room with a whopping 16.7% share.
  • Amphenol is approaching $5.0 billion in sales and has 9.0% of the market. Amphenol’s acquisition program is inviable, making the company the fastest growing company in the industry.
  • Molex is now a private company owned by Koch and has an impressive 7.1% of the market. Expect many more acquisitions from Molex.
  • Delphi acquired FCI’s automotive connector business adding over $1.0 billion in sales. Delphi owns a 5.5% share of the market.

Top Ten Sales Performance

The following table show the top ten sales performance over the past ten years.

World’s Top 10 Connector Manufacturers 2004, 2009 and 2014 Sales with 5-Year and 10-Year CAGR

table-4

Amphenol is clearly the fastest growing company, achieving a 10-year CAGR of an incredible 14.8%.

Since 2004, the top ten achieved a CAGR of 6.5% versus industry growth of 4.5%. 

Ronald E. Bishop


Ronald E. Bishop

Ronald E. Bishop founded Bishop & Associates Inc., a market research firm that specializes in the world electronic connector industry, in 1985. The firm publishes a monthly newsletter titled “The Bishop Report,” and the twice-monthly digital publication Connector Supplier.

The reports, produced by a staff of 20 researchers, focus on geographic regions, end-user equipment markets, connector products, and interconnect technologies.

The firm also provides executive placement services and conducts multi-client studies and customer surveys, and assists in merger and acquisition activity.

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