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IC Resources’ founder Neil Dickins travelled to Munich to attend the GSA Executive Forum on June 2nd. Here are his summary of this fantastic event!
What’s the Event?
The Global Semiconductor Alliance is the industry’s biggest and most prominent design-centric membership organisation. They run multiple international executive forums; the annual Munich meeting is their European flagship event.
Was there a theme?
This year the theme was ‘Facing New Realities’. In a nutshell, it was an opportunity to look at the post Covid landscape, which is currently defined by supply chain shortages and unprecedented global demand.
Who was there?
The attendance at the GSA Exec forum is always excellent. Circa 200 senior executives from with the design and supply communities were there, with about 15 exhibitors ranging from assembly and test to …. a truly elite recruitment organisation. The big European IC design companies are always well represented. Infineon, NXP, ST, and more, were there alongside a range of international attendees. A senior technology expert from Meta was spotted. And he spent very little time on social media!
I’ve been going to the exec forum for the last 15 years. It’s always one of the most collaborative and collegiate events that I attend. There’s plenty of cooperation and discussion, even among ‘competitors’, because everyone has the same fundamental goal: for the wider semiconductor industry to thrive, grow, and solve some of the world’s most complex problems. For example, one presentation was from Giorgia Longobardi, the CEO of Cambridge GaN Devices. The company is developing technology that will reduce power consumption and have an enormous positive impact on global CO2 emissions.
Any thoughts and take-aways?
First and foremost: it was great to see so many familiar – and new – faces after the restrictions of the last two years. Zoom is fine for ‘tactical’ discussions, but face to face is the only way to really bounce strategic ideas around and learn from others’ perspectives.
The industry is embarking on a wave of post-Moore’s-law innovation. One example is a scale-up company called Atlant 3D Nanosystems, which is developing atomic-layer advanced manufacturing equipment. I was very impressed with their CEO, Maksym Plakhotnyuk; it sounds as though received funding in record time from impressive investment partners, including Sony.
I’ll take this opportunity to give a shout-out to Sandro Grigolli, who does a fantastic job of running the event. Over the years he has become a true master Master of Ceremonies.
Helpful hints to future attendees?
Save room for dessert! The food on offer at the Sofitel Munich during the networking breaks and lunch is always excellent - the highlight is the selection of desserts. You’ll definitely need to save space to sample at least three!
The Global Semiconductor Alliance (GSA) “has an impressive global footprint representing over 25 countries and 250 corporate members, including 100 public companies. As a result of our unique, neutral platform, our membership ranges from the most exciting, emerging companies to semiconductor industry stalwarts and technology leaders. Our members now represent 70% of the $450B plus semiconductor industry.”
This year's topic of the GSA European Executive Forum was ‘Facing New Realities’ and an elite line-up of expert speakers explored the themes of:
Some of this year's speakers included:
Alongside the speakers, at the event the exhibitors that attended were:
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