Posts Tagged ‘ESD Alliance’
Thursday, March 30th, 2017
Today is the day some EDA purists thought would never happen: The disassembling of an industry status quo that’s been in place for over 20 years
As of today, Mentor Graphics has been sold and is fully owned by Siemens. Now Mentor’s arc of history will be decided by folks not residing in the green forests and hills of northern Oregon, and the Big Three cartel is no more. A cartel which has slowly consolidated the playing field over time until nary a startup can be seen.
The power vested in the Big Three EDA companies has grown steadily and inexorably over these years, as has their market dominance. Examination of recent numbers provided by the ESD Alliance Market Statistics Service indicates that today, in excess of 85-percent of the revenue earned in the EDA industry can be attributed to the combination of Synopsys, Cadence, and Mentor Graphics.
These three companies, their leadership, sales prowess, and increasing control of the conversation and technical direction in the industry has made for a powerful cartel. But again, that cartel is no more and the crystal ball predicting future dynamics within the EDA industry has gone dark.
Thursday, March 2nd, 2017
DVCon generates a lot of respect, and for good reason. Engineers have attended this conference for over 25 years to further refine their skills in the area of design and verification. Yet, there’s a problem in paradise.
In an industry like EDA that’s super dominated by just three players, there’s little if any room in the industry – or at a conference like DVCon – to showcase the ideas and innovations of the Small Guys. The Big Guys teach tutorials and present papers; the Small Guys get to hang posters in the hallways.
All of that was supposed to change tonight thanks to the sponsorship of the ESD Alliance and OneSpin Solutions, as well as Vista Ventures’ Jim Hogan.
Tonight, six of the Small Guys in verification appeared on a panel moderated by Hogan hoping to get their 60-minute shot at fame. A post-Happy-Hour hour in which to lay out their case for customers to come and sample the kind of innovation that everyone knows is the watchword of technology startups, particularly in EDA.
Thursday, January 26th, 2017
If you were to attend only one Kaufman Award dinner throughout your career, tonight’s might have been the right choice: a lovely meal in downtown Silicon Valley, and presentations full of warmth, respect, humor and clear-eyed admissions, all in honor of CMU’s Dr. Andrzej Strojwas, long-time CTO at PDF Solutions.
Having interviewed Prof. Strojwas some months ago when he was first named the 2016 Kaufman Award winner, and knowing the event was in the capable hands of the ESD Alliance, this evening’s ambiance was not a complete surprise. But the display of emotion and palpable affection with which Dr. Strojwas is held by colleagues and family was almost mesmerizing.
In fact, as PDF CEO John Kibarian hit his stride at the podium, detailing the lifetime of achievements and leadership at the core of Dr. Strojwas’ award commendation, there could be no looking away.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Thursday, September 29th, 2016
Dr. Andrzej J. Strojwas, professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, has been named recipient of the 2016 Phil Kaufman Award for Distinguished Contributions to Electronic System Design.
Interestingly, this is the first year that the Kaufman award is being presented for contributions to Electronic System Design, not EDA. Very appropriate given that Strojwas’ contributions are in manufacturing and not design. Prof. Stojwas is CTO at PDF Solutions, which per company CEO John Kibarian has never been an EDA company. And with Kibarian serving as co-chair of the ESD Alliance, the organization formerly known as EDAC has now fully embraced its role across the entirety of electronic system design.
Besides this nod to EDAC’s ongoing evolution, the larger implications in CEDA and the ESD Alliance naming Andrzej Strojwas as this year’s Kaufman recipient are profound: The problems associated with electronic systems are not so much in the design these days, but in the extraordinary difficulties associated with manufacturing those designs. It’s really tough, as you all know, when the structures being manufactured are smaller than the wavelengths of light used to etch them.
Which bring us back to Dr. Strojwas. He has been CTO at PDF for 20 years. Back in the last century/millennium, the problems of manufacturing below 193 nanometers could only have been guessed at, yet the company was already working on the intriguing issues of capturing post-manufacturing data and somehow packaging it up to make it useful: How does the semiconductor supply chain glean vital information about the vagaries of manufacturing a real chip and send it back up to the designers so they can learn from the reality when they put pen to paper to design the next hypothetical?
This engineering of the engineering demands scientific curiosity, steely eyed attitudes towards the realities of physics and material science, and a large dollop of business savvy to navigate between the needs and demands of the foundries and the needs and demands of the designers. Let’s allow Dr. Strojwas to take it from here. We spoke by phone this week after his award was announced.
Tuesday, June 7th, 2016
A big 10-gallon hats-off to Charles Alpert & Team for injecting fresh creativity and energy into the 53rd annual Design Automation Conference. Those who knew little about Alpert, and I’m among those few, were overwhelmed by the DAC General Chair and Host of the Opening Session who took the stage Monday morning in Austin.
Straightaway, Charles shed his corporate persona in favor of his Texas roots, welcomed us all to his home town, asked that we call him Chuck, offered photos and first names only of the entire DAC Executive Committee, showed us a map of a new and innovate layout for the DAC Exhibit Hall – including a central boulevard that Baron Haussmann himself would have celebrated – and then asked us to help him do two things:
Keep Austin Weird, apparently a principle plank in the City’s Charter, and ergo to Keep DAC Weird, as well as Nerdy, Fun and Alive. And no sooner did Chuck extend this request, than it was …
Thursday, April 7th, 2016
Several weeks ago, before the EDA Consortium was re-branded as the ESD Alliance, I had a chance to speak by phone with Bob Smith, Executive Director of the organization. I started by asking what concerned him the most about the re-launch. Bob was too optimistic to pick up on that negative note.
Instead he said, “It looks like we’re going to have a really good turnout for our event next week on March 30th, with well over 100 people expected. We are billing the evening as 90-percent social and only 10-percent business. I’ll speak for about 5 minutes and no longer, introducing the new name for EDAC.
“Mostly we want to have a get-together where people who haven’t seen each for a long time can enjoy catching up. We honestly hope that people will just have a good time. Also, it’s great that a number of the board members will be there.”