MANAGEMENT STATEMENTNexperia discusses investing now to tackle future challenges and opportunities
Nexperia, the essential semiconductor powerhouse, is now almost six years old. Since its inception revenue has doubled, to USD 2.1bn, enabling investments globally in capacity as well as R&D to develop new, unique products. Mark Roeloffzen, SVP and General Manager Bipolar Discretes, tells us how the company sees itself and the semiconductor market changing in the future.
About Mark Roeloffzen
Mark is Nexperia’s SVP & GM BG Bipolar Discretes, leading the team responsible for our small signal discrete, ESD protection and power discrete portfolio. He has a strong international business and commercial background with over 15 years of semiconductor experience in various leading roles in strategy, supply chain and global marketing. Mark holds a Master of Science degree in industrial engineering and management science from the Technical University of Twente in the Netherlands and an Executive MBA from the International Institute for Management Development (IMD) in Lausanne, Switzerland.
We know that Nexperia, as an independent entity, has a long heritage. Could you briefly describe your business and the markets you serve?
Mark Roeloffzen: We entered the market in 2017 with the goal to become a leading expert in the high-volume production of essential semiconductors. Our roots go back to NXP Semiconductors and previously Philips Semiconductors. With our 15,000 product-strong portfolio we serve virtually every electronic design in the world. Every year, our employees across the globe add more than 800 new products to the line, all while also shipping more than 100 billion units in 2021.
After doubling our annual revenue of about USD 1.1 billion at inception to more than USD 2.1 billion today, our target is to reach USD 10 billion by 2030.
What is the outlook for Nexperia, given the current situation of the semiconductor market?
The overall semiconductor market grew by 30 % in 2021 and demand continues to exceed supply in many sectors. In some of these, particularly high-volume commodity products, the balance between supply and demand has always been volatile. On the other hand, today’s market megatrends – connectivity and digitalization, electrification, industry 4.0 and automation, sustainability, and energy efficiency – are driving sustained growth in demand for products such as power management and signal conversion. So, we are investing strongly in technology, manufacturing capacity, and our people to meet the needs of our customers.
For example, in 2021 we tripled our capital investment outlay in Europe and Asia to further expand the production capacity at our wafer fabs. In addition, we are building more strategic partnerships with external foundries and subcontractors that will play a vital role in our future growth.
We have opened a new design center in Dallas, Texas, which is our first research and development facility in North America. The team here focuses on the development of analog signal conversion and power management ICs. Opening this center is consistent with our plan to employ highly skilled people where they are. We have similar specialist design centers in Penang and Shanghai and more to come!
How do you intend to move your product portfolio forward?
We are striving to grow our portfolio of differentiated and unique products with innovation being a key pillar of our strategy for our essential semiconductor portfolio.
As part of this plan, we are working closely with our strategic customers to ensure early roadmap alignment and timely design-in. We are also increasing our R&D investment, which is more than 50 % this year than in 2021. Our goal is to grow the R&D spend from about 10 % of total sales revenue to 15 % over time.
In addition, we established our new IGBTs & Modules and Power & Signal Conversion business groups in 2021, to better serve our customers and market requirements as the power domain continues to grow quickly. They will complement our existing business groups to extend our offering in power discretes.
Which technologies will you be most focused on developing in the coming years?
We are already offering efficient power Gallium Nitride (GaN) FETs and continue to develop and innovate this technology further. Additionally, we are developing a portfolio of Silicon Carbide (SiC) rectifiers and FETs. These relatively new wide-bandgap technologies are already outperforming traditional silicon-based products in terms of efficiency and still have plenty of untapped potential. However, silicon remains widely used after decades of evolution and we intend to continue development. As new markets and applications continue to emerge, each presenting differing requirements, we will maintain flexibility to offer the optimum solution that hits all the targets: high performance, cost, and availability.
In addition, Nexperia is continuing technical development of high-voltage power products such as IGBTs, HV MOS, and recovery rectifiers. We strongly believe that the best solution for each different customer application depends on balancing performance, cost, and supply. Thus, Nexperia will always strive to offer the best solutions in all applicable technologies and device categories, ultimately enabling our customers to deliver the top-performing products in the markets they serve.
Thank you for the interview, Mr. Roeloffzen.