eeNews: What is your greatest achievement?
Carlo Bozotti: It’s hard to say one thing. I am proud of contributing to SGS becoming more international and helping introduce smartpower products when I was young. Then there is my time in the US signing up Seagate, Western Digital and Hewlett-Packard. And then more lately what we have done in microcontrollers, sensors.
I believe the company is solid with 21,000 employees in Europe out of a total of 45,000, and it is innovative and growing. My dream was for ST to be a bit bigger in terms of revenue. But in terms of return on capital employed the target was in the range of 12 to 18 percent, and our actual performance is around 23 percent.
eeNews: What do you think are the most significant technological, commercial and political developments that have occurred during your career?
Carlo Bozotti: Well clearly the cost of semiconductor R&D and new fabs has increased dramatically. For example, there's only three companies in the world that have mastered the FinFET. ST is not manufacturing FinFET but we are designing there. We have a number of important developments in 7nm. But we are also differentiated by the adders to technology; BCD, MEMS, specialized image sensors and now silicon carbide for power. Then, there is FDSOI with PCM [fully depleted silicon on insulator with phase change memory as an embedded option].
It is important for Europe that there are companies like ST that can develop these technologies. They are key in the digitalization and electrification of the automobile and of industry, where Europe must continue to lead.
In terms of politics, globalization has been the trend not only in terms of supply chain but also in terms of technology and innovation. Now there is innovation coming from China, and this is a big change.
But in Europe we need to do something. Across the European Union 18 percent of young people do not have a job. We need to find a way to reduce youth unemployment. Here, technology and innovation play a fundamental role.
eeNews: Some might argue electronics is to blame for unemployment through automation and globalization.
Carlo Bozotti: It is not as simple as that. In Bavaria you have the highest level of robotization in the world but it is also an area with very low unemployment. We need to find differentiation through competences and knowledge. Education is the key.
Next: What next?