Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category
Thursday, January 5th, 2017
IEEE’s CEDA and the ESD Alliance – with help from their friends at PDF Solutions, Cadence, Mentor, Synopsys and ACM SIGDA – will host a dinner on Thursday, January 26th, in honor of the 2016 Phil Kaufman Award recipient: Dr. Andrzej Strojwas, Keithley Professor of ECE at Carnegie Mellon and long-time CTO at PDF Solutions.
Unfortunately, the last several Kaufman Award dinners were such over-the-top events – the 2014 event in honor of Dr. Lucio Lanza awash in glamour and luminaries, and the 2015 event in honor of Dr. Walden Rhines replete with zany zeitgeist and a roast from Intel-legend Craig Barrett unparalleled in the annals of EDA history.
The organizers of this year’s event may, therefore, find it impossible to craft something anywhere close to the previous two dinners, if the metrics of energy and frenetic glad-handing are the only ones of importance.
Of course, these are not the only two metrics of importance and nothing is ever impossible in EDA or IP, so do not despair.
Thursday, December 15th, 2016
The New Year promises to be a dramatic one on many fronts, not the least being the ever-quickening pace of change in technology. Evidenced by the continued and enthusiastic attendance at conferences around the world, there are clearly so many opportunities to network, learn, and develop sales leads at these events. Bets are on that you’ll be attending at least one of these. Happy New Year!
* CES2017: Consumer Electronics Show – January 5-8 – Las Vegas
No one need tell you what CES encompasses: Here in its 50th annual edition, it will include everything. The 2017 keynotes will include addresses from the CEOs of Qualcomm, Huawai, Nissan Motors, and Nvidia. But the topics covered in this massive 100,000-attendee show will cover cars, wearables, healthcare devices, and every conceivable type of consumer clutter.
Thursday, December 8th, 2016
For the first time ever, a citizen of the EDA Nation will be President of the IEEE, with 400,000+ members, the largest professional organization in the world. Karen Bartleson is serving as IEEE President-Elect here in 2016, and will serve as IEEE President starting in January 2017.
Prior to her current role at IEEE, she was President for two years of the IEEE Standards Association, a group with total membership exceeding 17,000. And prior to her leadership there, as every citizen of the EDA Nation knows, Bartleson honed her myriad skills through 20 years of distinguished service at Synopsys.
Thursday, November 17th, 2016
It’s no secret that my 5-year old laptop died recently; the cries of anguish could be heard a mile away. What to do?
Step 1: Boot the system off Fedora on a data-stick, recover the lost files, and move on.
To do that required the mechanical workaround of duct-taping the power supply, which wouldn’t stay seated, to the chassis because the battery wouldn’t hold a charge, and laying the laptop on a squishy bag of ice to keep it cool enough long enough to do the off-loading. Happily, the tired old hard drive coughed up the goods, then sputtered one last time and said adieu.
Step 2: Buy a new laptop, which is far easier said than done if you’ve been out of the market for a while. Too many choices, too many price ranges, and too many metrics to consider.
To my great luck, however, my old HP died just days prior to CEDA’s Design Automation Futures Workshop. Right there on the Mentor campus in Fremont in late October, therefore, I had the opportunity to do some critical [secret] market research: What are the brightest minds in technology using these days by way of laptops?
Monday, November 14th, 2016
If you were watching Seattle beat New England last night, and not the news, you missed it: The rumor that Munich-based Siemens would buy Wilsonville-based Mentor Graphics.
This morning, of course, it’s no longer a rumor. The players themselves have announced that the deed is done.
Per the Press Release, “Siemens and Mentor Graphics today announced that they have entered into a merger agreement under which Siemens will acquire Mentor for $37.25 per share in cash, which represents an enterprise value of $4.5 billion.”
Wow, talk about just in the nick of time.
Thursday, November 10th, 2016
The American people have spoken and the electoral college will finalize the results shortly. The new President-elect is someone who has ridden into office on a tidal wave of enthusiasm for his professed commitments to a reduction in globalization, more tightly controlled borders, bringing off-shored jobs back home to citizens who deserve to have them, and a carefully articulated affection for nativism.
EDA is in trouble on all counts.
First of all, the EDA industry, and its associated fortunes, have been built on a powerful foundation of globalization; prominent members of the industry have quite literally lobbied long and hard to be sure that stays the case.
Mentor CEO Dr. Walden C. Rhines has, in fact, been honored multiple times by the industry’s consortium for his extraordinary leadership in helping to guarantee that EDA software is not unduly constrained by export restrictions, licensing inhibitions, or government nay-sayers.
Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016
The best part about the ESD Alliance event last evening at the Cadence Headquarters in San Jose was that the topic material – how to prepare your enterprise to be acquired – is applicable to all manner of tech startups. And as the conversation was taped, the discussion will be available straightaway on the alliance website.
Of course, if you’re prepping for an acquisition you’ll need far more pointed advice than just this recorded conversation – you’ll need to hire experts to address your specific situation. Nonetheless, yesterday’s panel provided a great starting point.
Carefully moderated by Attorney Mark White [White Summers, Caffee & James LLP], who had clearly done his homework, each panelist added essential information to what was effectively a tutorial on pre-acquisition best practices.
Speakers included IP/Patent Attorney Dennis Fernandez [WhiteSummers], Tax Attorney Tom Maier [Fudderman Dupree], Investment Banker Neil Shroff [Orion Capital], Moodwire CEO Manu Chatterjee [founded Lampdesk, sold to Palm in 2007], and Silvaco GM for IP Warren Savage [founded IPextreme, sold to Silvaco earlier this year].
The conversation between these five gentlemen – two attorneys, a banker, and two CEOs who have survived acquisitions – was not at all glamorous. Instead, it was honest, calm, factual and amazingly short on hubris of any kind.
Turns out being acquired is a very humbling experience, that acknowledgment being one of the most important take-aways from the evening. Don’t go at the process with pretentiousness, because pride goeth before the fall, was the message.
Wednesday, October 26th, 2016
Last week on Friday and Saturday, the IEEE Council on EDA hosted a 2-day workshop to discuss the future of design automation. Mentor Graphics provided the venue – a large conference room in their Fremont/Silicon Valley campus – and workshop leaders, UCSD Prof. Andrew Kahng, UCSD Prof. Farinaz Koushanfa, and Intel alum/CEDA President Shishpal Rawat provided the welcome.
Over the two days, a group of 50+ attendees – representing a wide cross-section of academics and industry experts – launched into conversations that were lively, energized, at times contentious, and completely engrossing. Put simply, there was no better place on the face of the globe on October 21st and 22nd where tech junkies were more intellectually challenged and entertained than at the Design Automation Futures Workshop in Fremont.
What made the workshop so compelling? For this, their inaugural DAFW, CEDA chose to address neuromorphic computing – the ultimate hotness related to machine learning, with a lot of promise for future applications. It doesn’t get any more design futures, or futuristic, than this.
Thursday, October 20th, 2016
You’ve all heard the rumors: Mentor Graphics is for sale. If it’s true, who could be buying? Let’s indulge in a gedankenexperiment to find out.
First there’s Cadence. Obviously. Mentor and Cadence both sell back-end tools and combining the two would create a powerful market-leading organization. Clearly Cadence is bigger and richer so they’d be doing the buying, but Mentor would be calling the shots. Why? Because last time these two bad hombres went through this mating dance, Mentor put the kibosh on things by orchestrating an outcry to the SEC about anti-trust. Mentor didn’t want to be bought in 2008, but now things might be different, their preferred outcome not so cut-and-dried. So Cadence is Good idea Number One.
Thursday, October 13th, 2016
Congrats to the ESD Alliance for continuing to attend to myriad legal issues that surround the business of technology. On Tuesday, November 1st, the organization is hosting an evening panel on the Cadence campus entitled “Legal Steps to Maximize Your Exit Value.”
Vital topics slated for discussion include setting the proper price for intangible assets – in-house IP, strategic partnerships, and good will – and more prosaic issues such as the appropriate legal structures and pre-deal tax planning needed to help facilitate the acquisition. Most importantly, panel organizers are also promising you’ll learn “how to avoid giving it all back to your buyer later”.
Which is where our EDA M&A Hall of Fame comes in. There’s just no way this ESD Alliance panel can carry any weight with a battle-hardened EDA audience without the likes of Sanjay Srivastava, Rajeev Madhavan, Chris Rowen, and Kathryn Kranen sitting up at the front of the room.