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Samsung was the third largest R&D spender in 2017, says Ernst & Young

A report of the top 500 R&D spenders in 2017 by Ernst & Young has placed Samsung Electronics third on the list. The Korean company invested 13.1 billion euros into R&D, which was below Amazon’s 20.1 billion euros and Alphabet’s (Google’s parent company) 14.8 billion euros – the top two firms in the rankings, respectively. Chipmaker Intel came in fourth with 11.6 billion euros in R&D investments.

If you are looking at Samsung’s figure and wondering about the absence of any path-breaking innovation in its Galaxy lineup, do realize it is the total R&D spend in 2017 by Samsung Electronics as a whole and not just the mobile division. Even if a sizeable part of that money went into mobile devices, it is not necessary the results are immediately visible or at all due to the nature of R&D.

No break up of Samsung’s R&D spending

None of the coverage online offers any breakup of the Samsung’s R&D spending, but if we go by the past trends and Samsung’s revenue breakup, it is safe to guess the company’s semiconductor division might have invested the most into R&D.

The total R&D spending by the top 500 firms went up by 6% to 532 billion euros in 2017. 65% of these businesses increased their R&D spending in 2017 compared to the previous year. American firms dominated the list with 127 out of the top 500 and 7 of the top ten firms belonging to the US.

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