July 3, 1976
INTERSIL - AMS MERGER
The Intersil-AMS merger makes a lot more sense than the other combinations,
including American Microsystems, Intersil.
AMS' legal situation is one which could be resolved, if need be, since
most legal actions of this type are amenable to settlement.
It seems incredible that Fairchild has not established a stronger position in
the MOS market. Fairchild has done as well in vertically integrated watch
Additional capital is not the solution to Western Digital's business problems.
With the drying up of profits in the calculator business and the disappearance
of customers through vertical integration, Western Digital has to become a
factor in microprocessors or the RAM market. Neither of these programs appear
strong at Digital. With the departure of key engineers it is unlikely that they
will be able to make an effective comeback. Merger of Western Digital with a
larger and stronger organization would be the best solution to the problem.
Start-ups are back in style and more can be expected.
MOS Technology has done a good job of improving on the Motorola 6800
microprocessor. With the effectiveness of Synertek as a second source, it's
possible that MOS Technology will finally be able to move the product in
Motorola advertisements have not been well received in the Phoenix area, since a
lot of the words regarding leadership and "you will have a job next year" are a
little difficult for local Phoenix residents to swallow.
Motorola/Austin still represents a substantial unknown in terms of its
ability to attract personnel and its overall production effectiveness.
Bob Cole was considered one of the good workers at Nitron.
It seems unlikely that Bud Frye, with his background in optoelectronics, would
have the ideal experience to move Integrated Circuit Technology to 3-4" wafer
mask production. Frye is a good man, but it's difficult to see how he qualifies
for this particular job.
OVERALL COMMENTS ON BUSINESS LEVELS
We note (in spite of the last monthly report from WEMA on bookings) that the
business picture in integrated circuits appears to be very strong. New programs
are now being refused in some cases for lack of profitability and/or the fact
that all production and engineering capacity has or is being utilized.
(Probably the best evaluation would be to apply a three-month rolling
average to the WEMA numbers and use this as an overall trend indicator of the IC
© 1976 Copyright Integrated Circuit Engineering Corporation