06:06 AM

Craig Barrett To Retire As Intel Chairman

[Intel is a sponsor of SVW]

Craig Barrett said he would retire as Intel chairman in May. It's a major loss for Intel because Mr Barrett was a key figure in helping Intel continue its dominance of the microprocessor markets and hold its position as the world's largest chipmaker.

He did that by focusing on chip manufacture. And that's the real secret of Intel's success-- not design but manufacture. Intel can build and ramp up a chip fab (one of the most complex industrial factories of our time) in record time, and do it again, and again, and again. There are hundreds of different processes involved in making chips, and hundreds of complex and very sensitive machines -- it's not an easy task to get the calibration done right. If you mess up in one process you lose the entire batch of chips and you quickly start to lose huge amounts of money.

Mr Barrett developed a process of copying exactly a fab in a new fab, and rapidly distributing process gains to its other fabs. This meant Intel could quickly build very complex fabs, and importantly, achieve very high manufacturing yields (something which rival Advanced Micro Devices always struggled with). Mr Barrett leaves Intel in a very strong position.

Here is Paul Mooney's recent video of Intel chairman Craig Barrett talking about Intel's involvement in the "Small Things Challenge." Intel will contribute 5 cents per click if you visit the site.


Here are more details on his retirement and replacement:

Barrett joined Intel in 1974 and has served in many capacities including CEO from 1998 through 2005. In recent years, Barrett has been active in Intel's World Ahead Program bringing information technology to the emerging economies and has been active in issues as far ranging as education, health care and U.S. competitiveness. Barrett is the current chair of the U.N. Global Alliance for Information and Communications Technology and Development.

Commenting on his 35 year career at Intel, Barrett noted that he was fortunate to have been able to work side by side with industry legends Bob Noyce, Gordon Moore and Andy Grove.

"I want to thank Craig for his 35 years of tireless efforts on behalf of Intel," said Paul Otellini, Intel president and CEO. "His legacy spans the creation of the best semiconductor manufacturing machine in the world, leading Intel for seven years as we emerged into a global powerhouse, and most recently as our industry's senior statesman and ambassador who has advocated the benefits of education and technology as forces for positive change. He has been my colleague, supervisor, mentor and friend for these 35 years. I wish him the very best as he moves on to the next chapter in his life."

Intel also announced that independent director Jane Shaw, who joined the Intel board in 1993, has been elected by the board of directors to replace Barrett as non-executive chairman beginning in May.

Intel Corporation - Intel Investor News