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All for one, one for all

Taking a product from concept to reality poses engineering management challenges, particularly for start ups. By Vanessa Knivett.

It's 18months since Jerry Loraine was appointed vice president of the wireless business of SiGe Semiconductor and managing director of its UK operation. SiGe, a fabless start up headquartered in Ottawa, is making its first inroads into the cable and wireless markets.

When Loraine joined, SiGe had just evolved from designing and modelling transistors for its partners to developing its own products. "When I started silicon germanium was still classed with exotic processes such as gallium arsenide, but now it's become more mainstream. Expertise in a process like SiGe devalues as it becomes more mainstream, so the move to a product company was essential in order to exploit our knowledge and get a headstart on product development."

SiGe has pursued a diverse product strategy under two business units – wireless and broadband. Design for cable products is concentrated in Canada, whilst the wireless strategy is being pursued in the UK.

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Graham Pitcher

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