Broadcom won’t catch up on semiconductor orders until at least November

Broadcom is one of the world’s top suppliers of the semiconductor chips that form the brains of everything from smartphones to cars to gaming consoles. It currently has a backlog of orders stretching at least eight months long.

Broadcom’s inventory woes are the latest sign of a broader chip shortage snarling supply chains across the globe. Pandemic-fueled chaos in the supply chain for semiconductor materials created an initial backlog in the middle of 2020. Then, stronger-than-expected demand for cars, combined with a seasonal spike in smartphone sales, drove demand much higher than supply.

On a March 4 earnings call, Broadcom CEO Tan Hock Eng said semiconductor backlogs have increased “quite significantly” over the course of the first quarter of the year. “We have customers [who] are willing to book out for delivery of those products, out through the rest of 2021,” he said.

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