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Blogs - May 15, 2023

First month on board – Dave Moore, CEO, Pragmatic

I am delighted to have joined Pragmatic Semiconductor at a very exciting and important time for the company and at a critical time for the semiconductor industry in the UK and around the world. Pragmatic’s vision to provide breakthrough solutions to some of society’s greatest challenges by adding intelligence to trillions of everyday objects resonates very deeply with me. There is clear potential to pivot to new ways of making semiconductors and an opportunity to address new markets where traditional solutions are uneconomical, environmentally unsustainable or simply infeasible. There is massive opportunity ahead for Pragmatic’s technology and the company continues to make tremendous progress in capturing it. Having worked in semiconductors for over two decades, at Altera, Intel and Micron, I’ve witnessed some mind-blowing innovation in the industry, but the more I’ve learned about Pragmatic in my first month on board, the more excited I have become by the truly disruptive potential of its innovative technology.  

An Internet of Everything where almost every object on the planet becomes smart and connected is unlocking an explosion of new use cases. Yet the truth is that connecting trillions of objects presents clear challenges. Factors like cost, form-factor, supply chain fragility and environmental impacts lead to inherent gaps in silicon-based solutions in many of the most exciting applications. Overcoming these challenges by delivering a real alternative in countless transformative applications is where Pragmatic excels. Unlike traditional silicon chips, Pragmatic’s fabrication process is based on metal-oxide thin film transistors which makes ICs that are inherently flexible and thinner than a human hair. This flexible form factor means the chips can be embedded in just about anything and are significantly cheaper and faster to produce than their silicon counterparts. Typically, this means Pragmatic’s chips can be produced for an order of magnitude lower cost and delivery of custom chips (from design to production) can be achieved in just a few weeks. Combined, these characteristics present a clear alternative to legacy- and mature-node silicon technology.

The manufacturing of silicon chips is increasingly under scrutiny for their environmental impact and there is growing concern about the effect of the industry on the planet’s resources. Pragmatic is framing an entirely new paradigm for smart manufacturing and has a real opportunity to lead the industry in driving new levels of sustainability. The manufacturing process for Pragmatic’s chips eliminates many of the resource-intensive production processes of silicon manufacturing.  It substantially reduces emissions while using 100x less power and 100x less water. If we are going to reduce the industry’s environmental footprint, we are going to increasingly need this kind of innovation. 

But it’s not just the direct environmental impact of manufacturing that needs to be addressed. When you look at the some of the global challenges we are facing – depletion of our natural resources, imbalances in the availability and outcomes in healthcare and interruptions to supply chains – semiconductors will underpin almost all the technological solutions in the future. However, in many cases, silicon-based solutions will continue to encounter headwinds. Constraints on the supply of relatively simple chips with just enough performance to get the small jobs done (but in great number) across a wide range of automotive, medical, industrial and consumer applications have been at the very heart of the recent global supply chain challenges. This is exactly the kind of chip that Pragmatic’s technology can support at scale. The application of Pragmatic’s technology can also support the broader sustainability and Net Zero goals of organisations. Enabling packaging re-use and recycling, helping to eliminate food waste and reducing the environmental impact of plastics – in a cost-effective way – are just some of the initiatives that can be accelerated by Pragmatic’s technology. Equally, ubiquitous and personalized healthcare solutions that directly improve outcomes can quickly become a reality in a variety of new medical applications enabled by Pragmatic’s flexible ICs. In short, the list of potential benefits that can be delivered by Pragmatic’s technology is long and it is wide.

As I look to the future, and the advances in technology that lie ahead, I am genuinely inspired by Pragmatic’s role in the industry: as an innovator, enabling new use cases that will benefit us all; and as a provider of technologies that will underpin solutions to some of our greatest societal and environmental challenges.

Read the announcement on Dave’s appointment here.


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