A few months before Cristiano Amon started as CEO
He was already working on his first crisis. To solve that, he sat in an almost empty conference room in Taipei and asked the executives of one of the world’s largest semiconductor makers to add chips.
He needed help Qualcomm, the designer of circuits used in hundreds of millions of electronic devices each year, to chase new markets and meet the demands of large customers such as Apple.
And the top mobile phone maker in China. In fact, he needed so much help that he was waiting for three days of quarantine with permission from the Taiwanese government to arrive in March. When he and his team arrived at the hotel meeting place in Taipei, they negotiated and communicated with each other in a large room with a microphone and speakers.
Amon, who was appointed CEO in January and officially took over in June, said:
Many new CEOs in the business world had to adapt to their roles within the limits of an unprecedented pandemic era, get acquainted without meeting key employees in person, and manage offices and business relationships from a distance. .. It can hardly be said that they have undergone a more turbulent transition than Mr. Amon, a Brazilian crowd who prefers person-to-person contact.
After working for over 20 years, he has tackled a series of major challenges, including a global chip shortage, sudden changes in major markets, and unexpected acquisition opportunities, trying to mark the company. increase. He wants to focus on expanding beyond Qualcomm’s core mobile chip business. This is a shift that started before he took over.
“I’ve done a lot in parallel and I want to succeed in all of them,” he said in an interview. “We are in a hurry, so we can’t help but do them.”
The jury has been with Amon during his youthful tenure. Qualcomm’s share price fell to $ 127.84 at Thursday’s closing price, from about $ 152 on the day it was announced as the next CEO. According to SMBC Nikko Securities America analyst Slini Pajuri, investors can benefit from the move to an ultra-fast next-generation wireless standard called 5G, and Apple’s own. I’m worried about whether to start manufacturing mobile phone communication chips.
Jeffrey Helrich, Dallas-based portfolio manager at Pendavis McFarland, said Amon’s pursuit of a new market was the right strategy. But he said the company needs to stay technologically top and avoid the return of old bugbears, including a legal battle with Apple over how to collect royalties through innovations in smartphone technology. Qualcomm and Apple settled the battle in 2019.
“Do you think their dispute with Apple is over forever? I don’t,” he said.
After graduating from electrical engineering at Campinas State University in the suburbs of São Paulo, Amon worked for a Brazilian multinational telecommunications company and performed two duties at Qualcomm between 1995 and 2004. The three 51-year-old fathers have been the company’s rising stars for years and became president in 2018.
Qualcomm was founded in 1985 by a group of engineers led by Irwin Jacobs, the first CEO. His son Paul succeeded him and handed the reins to Steve Morenkov in 2014. These leaders pioneered ways to connect mobile phones to cell towers, making Qualcomm a ubiquitous player for cellular devices. Known for his modest attitude, Morenkov saw the company through turbulent proceedings, antitrust scrutiny, and hostile takeover attempts by rival chip makers.
Amon is in contrast to Morenkov, who retired in June. His outbound style is suitable for new customer courtship and new business scouting tasks. Amon rocked the company’s management team to support the transformation and invited about 20 new executives. He said the group included people with backgrounds in cloud computing, personal computers and automotive technology.
He didn’t have much time to settle down at work. Just before nodding, he played against Covid-19, who signed around Christmas. Upon recovery, he traveled around the world, raising prices for electronics and resuming ahead of the devastating chip supply squeeze that hindered the production of everything from cars to home appliances to PCs.
That shortage he predicts will ease in the first half of 2022 put Qualcomm In a tricky position.. The company designs communications and data processing chips, but their manufacture depends on others, and their fate cannot be completely controlled. Ensuring manufacturing capacity is important to Amon’s long-term desire to bring Qualcomm chips to more cars, drones and other devices.
After being nominated for the corner office, Mr. Amon first stopped in South Korea. After that, I visited Taiwan in March and returned to South Korea in May. For these countries, Samsung Electronics Co of South Korea.or
Prior to his top job, Amon frequently visited these places to meet with his industrial partners. However, a pandemic and a global tip shortage have made this year’s stay unfamiliar. Everywhere he faced similarly severe anti-Covid measures like Taiwan’s government escort from the airport to a government-approved hotel where he couldn’t leave. When in Taiwan, Mr. Amon usually dropped in at the original location of the famous dim sum restaurant Din Tai Fung. Covid denied the ritual.
Qualcomm is also competing for a larger share of the Chinese mobile chip market. The battle has intensified over the past year after US regulations on Huawei Technologies Co. have crippled Chinese telecommunications giants. Huawei has manufactured many of its own chips, but some are competing to seize the market share supplied by Qualcomm and its competitors.
To encourage suppliers to increase Qualcomm’s manufacturing capacity, Amon made a rare move in the industry, agreeing to prepay supplies and signing longer-than-usual contracts. Amon said Qualcomm’s customers and users of products that didn’t buy directly from the company were enthusiastic about the lack of chips.
“I can’t find customers who aren’t under direct and indirect pressure,” he said. “Now it’s a pressure cooker.”
Amon also met and spoke with CEOs of defense industry contractors, industry companies, and numerous automakers as part of an effort to diversify Qualcomm’s customer base from telephone chips.He signed a contract with a French car maker
Put Qualcomm chips in the upcoming electric car.
When he took over, he said people advised to fix themselves to a long-term strategy too soon. However, in his three-hour presentation this summer, he decided to present a detailed five-year plan to all Qualcomm employees anyway. He wanted to find an incentive for employees to find out how their work was in line with the company’s goals.
The idea behind Qualcomm’s promotion of the automotive industry is Today, more and more automakers are using semiconductors in dashboard displays, driving assistance, and other applications.
That strategy created the biggest surprise for Amon’s young term as CEO. It’s a multi-billion dollar takeover bid for an automotive technology company that makes sensors that allow computers to play a bigger role in driving.It had to rob the company, the Swedish company
From competing bidders.
Qualcomm had already partnered with Veoneer to work on self-driving systems, but Veoneer’s management said
Driving Tech subsidiary Mobileye.Canadian car company
In July, it offered a $ 3.8 billion cash offer to acquire Veoneer, threatening Qualcomm’s self-driving strategy.
Amon first tried to buy a stake in the self-driving partnership Veoneer for $ 2 billion, and then in July he sweetened the offer to $ 2.5 billion. Instead, Veoneer’s CEO asked Qualcomm to bid for the entire company. In August, Amon provided $ 4.6 billion, and this month a Swedish company accepted a bid placed by Qualcomm in partnership with an investment company.
The deal marked a hectic beginning for Amon’s CEO term. One of Amon’s laments about the first few months is how little his time is. “I have a tip and a lack of time,” he said. “We are in a hurry. We have a lot to do. We need to diversify and relocate Qualcomm, and we don’t have much time.”
Correction and amplification
Veoneer Inc. is the name of a Swedish company that manufactures sensors that allow computers to play a greater role in driving. Earlier versions of this article incorrectly stated that the company name was Venoeer. (Corrected on October 8)
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“We are in a hurry.” The new CEO scrambles to deal with the global chip crisis.
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