2017 Top 25 Global Electronics Distributors: A Wrestling Match

Over the past decade, the electronics distribution market has been pounded with waves of change, both in the business model and the competitive landscape. In recent years, though, growth in the industry has been more of a game of inches, with major players wrestling for greater customer share. 

Compared to last year, only one company moved more than a single spot in the listing, with the top seven remaining completely static. Excelpoint Technology rose two spots in the ranking, showing solid revenue growth.

Last October, the company announced that it was being acquired by Avnet (#1 on the list). The all cash merger for £1.85 per share equates to an equity value of approximately £691 million. “The combination of Premier Farnell with Avnet's components business will create a truly unique distribution model that supports customers at every stage of the product lifecycle. By pairing our deep expertise in large volume broadline distribution with Premier Farnell's specialization in proof of concept and design, we can offer true end-to-end solutions that accelerate a customer's time-to-market and moves their products seamlessly from prototype through to volume production,” said William Amelio, chief executive officer of Avnet said in a written statement. In addition, Avnet finalized the sale of its Technology Solutions business in February 2017.

Avnet’s global revenues for the calendar year 2016 dropped 8% compared to the year before. Electrocomponents plc dropped 12.3% in year over year revenue; and Macnica Fuji Electronics had a slight (1.7%) revenue decrease in the same period. In all, only four distributors reported a revenue decrease.

At the same time, four of the companies on the list reported double digit revenue growth. The list included:  WT Microelectronics, 24.8%; Excelpoint, 19.3%; Master, 11%; and Mouser, 10.4%. Mouser is notable as well in that the increase took them into a billion dollar revenue category.

Further, this year’s top 25 distributor list has only a single newcomer: Glyn Jones. The company took spot #23 on the list. Although new to our listing, the company is certainly a 35-year marketplace veteran with 20 offices and 200 employees across 13 countries. The company focuses on semiconductors, display and system solutions, GSM, and flash memory media.

Hughes Peters was the only company that disappeared this year compared to last year. The multi-regional distributor sells interconnect, passive and electromechanical products.

For this year’s list of top distributors, along with revenue and other company information, click on the image below to start a slideshow.

2017 Top 25 Global Electronics Distributors

— Hailey Lynne McKeefry, Editor in Chief, EBN Circle me on Google+ Follow me on Twitter Visit my LinkedIn page Friend me on Facebook

8 comments on “2017 Top 25 Global Electronics Distributors: A Wrestling Match

  1. Mike Stifter
    June 20, 2017

    Your article forgot to mention the importance of the Top Global Independent Electronics Distributors such as Advanced MP Technology who has been in the industry for over 38 years.  During times of supply shortages, obsolescence's or lead time push outs from the factory, Independents such as Advanced MP Technology are able to provide quality product to help keep production up and running.   

  2. Hailey Lynne McKeefry
    June 20, 2017

    Hi Mike, Your point is well taken. Independant distributors have an important place and role in the distribution and electronics sector.  In recent years, this has been more true than ever before. I think we've pretty much banished the term “gray market.”  The EBN Top 25 has traditionally been a listing of franchised distributors. Is it time to rethink that? How many big independants do you think would make it on the list?

  3. Mike Stifter
    June 21, 2017

    Hello Hailey, 

    We do agree our role has become more important as the top independents have evolved into more of a strategic partner with the OEM, ODM and EMS providers.  But there definitely is still a “gray market”.  This is why partnering with an Advanced MP Technology, or equal top independent, is critical to ensure the quality of product along with the service are consistent with autohrized disty's and industry standards.  There are a handful of big independents that would make and deserve to be on the list.  It is definitely time to reconsider how the top independents are perceived since we can help increase profitability and add a value under any market conditions.  Especially those indepenedents that have been in the industry for almost 40 years like AMPT has.

  4. Asher
    June 22, 2017

    The article includees many interesting facts. Thanks!

  5. Michel Pignon
    June 29, 2017

    There are a lot of big independents that would make and deserve to be here !!!


  6. Francois Genot
    July 4, 2017

    “It is definitely time to reconsider how the top independents are perceived “


    I do agree 100 %.

  7. agathabang
    April 11, 2018

    I know few companies in the top of the list on that deserve to be in this list.

  8. Nigelw
    April 16, 2018

    Can you confirm that Premier Farnell revenue has shrunk from 1.4 Billion to 1.37 million?

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