It is the largest independent producer of DRAM Memory Modules, currently owning 27.5% of the third-party worldwide module market share, according to iSuppli. These figures do not include Kingston OEM revenues. Kingston is arguably the second largest supplier of Flash memory.
In 2007, Kingston generated revenues of US $4.5 billion, growth of 21.6% over 2006. Kingston has been growing at a rate of over 20% for the past 9 years, except 2001 when it saw decline in revenues due to global slowdown. Forbes lists Kingston as #83 on its list of "The 500 Largest Private Companies in the U.S." and Inc. ranks Kingston as the #1 Fastest Growing Private Company By Revenue.
Kingston serves an international network of distributors, resellers, retailers and OEM customers on six continents. The company also provides contract manufacturing and supply chain management services for semiconductor manufacturers and system OEMs.
Through its ownership of Kingston Technology Company Inc. and Advanced Validation Labs Inc. (AVL), Kingston Technology Corporation is one of the world’s leading memory module manufacturing, module validation, semiconductor packaging and test companies in the world.
Kingston Technology was founded on October 17, 1987, in response to a severe shortage of surface-mount memory chips in the high-tech marketplace in the 1980s. To provide a solution, Taiwanese immigrants John Tu and David Sun put their engineering expertise to work and designed a new Single In-Line Memory Module (SIMM) that used readily available, older technology through-hole components.
1989 Kingston differentiates itself from its competitors with 100-percent testing, resulting in quality assurance and the leadership position in the market.
1990 Kingston branches out into its first non-memory product line, processor upgrades.
1992 Kingston is ranked #1 by Inc. magazine as the fastest-growing privately held company in America.
1993 Kingston expands into networking and storage product lines.
1994 Kingston introduces DataTraveler and DataPak portable products. In September, Kingston becomes ISO 9000 certified on its first assessment attempt. Forbes magazine lists Kingston as number 367 on its list of “The 500 Largest Private Companies in the U.S.” Kingston is listed with revenue of $489 million.
1995 Kingston opens a branch office in Munich, Germany to provide technical support and marketing capabilities for its European distributors and customers. In October, Kingston joins the Billion-Dollar Club. The company’s 1995 sales exceed $1.3 billion. Ads ran thanking the employees (“Thanks a Billion!”) with each individual employee name in the Wall Street Journal, Orange County Register and Los Angeles Times. Ads ran thanking the suppliers and distributors in trade publications and the Wall Street Journal
1996 On August 15, SoftBank Corporation of Japan acquires 80 percent of Kingston for a total of $1.5 billion. In November, Kingston and Toshiba co-Market memory upgrades for Toshiba PCs. This is the first time a PC OEM and a memory manufacturer team up. On December 14, John Tu and David Sun allocate $100 million for employee bonuses as a result of the acquisition, averaging $130,000 for each of the company's 550 workers. Kingston announces a 49% increase in unit sales for its memory module products in calendar year 1996 over calendar year 1995.
1997 In January, Kingston opens its European headquarters in the United Kingdom. Kingston opens manufacturing facility/office in Taiwan. Kingston opens sales office in Japan. In August, Kingston opens manufacturing facility and offices in Dublin, Ireland.
1998 Kingston ranked #2 by Fortune Magazine of the "100 Best Companies to Work for in the United States" Kingston expands manufacturing capacity by purchasing PC-OEM manufacturing buildings in Fountain Valley, CA. In February, the Quality Management Systems of Kingston Technology were assessed and registered as meeting the requirements of ISO 9001/ANSI/ASQC Q9001 for quality standards by SGS International Certification Services.
1999 In July, John Tu and David Sun buy back the 80 percent of Kingston owned by Softbank for $450 million. Kingston introduces ValueRAM a high-quality, low-cost memory designed for system integrators to use in white box solutions. In September, Kingston opens manufacturing facility in Penang, Malaysia.
2001 In March, Kingston announces the formation of the Consumer Markets Division (CMD), a new division focusing on the retail and e-tail channel. Kingston is honored by Industry Week as a "Top 5 Global Manufacturing Company"
2002 In January, Kingston makes Fortune’s list of “100 Best Companies to Work For” for the fifth year in a row. In July, Kingston launches patented, industry-leading memory tester. In November, Kingston launches new HyperX line of high-performance memory modules. Kingston launches patented EPOC chip-stacking technology.
2003 In April, Kingston receives the “Diverse Supplier Award for Best Overall Performance” from Dell. In June, Kingston is honored for “Excellence in Fairness” by the Great Place to Work Institute. In August, Kingston makes a $50 million investment in Elpida. In October, Kingston launches “Green Initiative” for module manufacturing.
2004 Kingston announces revenues of $1.8B for 2003. iSuppli ranks Kingston as world's number-one memory module manufacturer for the third-party memory market. In August, Kingston increases Flash memory cards' warranty to "lifetime". In September, Kingston announces new DataTraveler Elite USB drives, with hardware-based security encryption. In October, AMD names Kingston "Outstanding Partner" for contributions to AMD Athlon 64 and Opteron launches.
2005 Kingston reports revenues of $2.4B for 2004. iSuppli ranks Kingston as world's number-one memory module manufacturer for the third-party memory market for the second consecutive year. In May, Kingston launches line of validated ValueRam modules for Intel-based servers. In July, Kingston is granted a U.S. patent on dynamic burn-in tester for server memory. Kingston announces $26M investment in Tera Probe, the newest and largest wafer testing company in the world. In September, Kingston opens the world's largest memory module manufacturing facility in Shanghai, China.
2006 Kingston reports revenues of $3.0B for 2005. iSuppli ranks Kingston as world's number-one memory module manufacturer for the third-party memory market for the third consecutive year. In March, Kingston introduces first fully-secure 100% privacy USB drive with 128-bit hardware-based encryption, and later with 256-bit hardware encryption. In April, Kingston launched Fully-Buffered Dimms (FBDIMMs) breaking the 16GB barrier. In August, Kingston enters the portable media market with KPEX (Kingston Portable Entertainment eXperience). In September, Kingston receives Intel’s “Outstanding Supplier Award for Exceptional Support, Quality and Timely Delivery of FB-DIMM Products”.
2007 Kingston reports revenues of $3.7B for 2006. January 2007: Inc. Magazine honors Kingston Technology Founders with Inaugural Distinuished Alumni Goldhirsh Award. iSuppli ranks Kingston as world's number-one memory module manufacturer for the third-party memory market for the fourth consecutive year. In October, Kingston Celebrates 20 years in the memory business. Forbes lists Kingston as number 83 on its list of "The 500 Largest Private Companies in the U.S." Inc. ranks Kingston as the #1 Fastest Growing Private Company By Revenue.
2008 Kingston reports revenues of $4.5B for 2007, marking the highest revenues attained in its 20-year history. iSuppli ranks Kingston as world's number-one memory module manufacturer for the third-party memory market for the fifth consecutive year. In August, Inc.com's "Top 100 Inc.5000 Companies" ranks Kingston #2 in both Gross Dollars of Growth and Overall Revenue.