I agree with you Dylan. More than that, I would characterize the two men, DeGeus and Madhavan, as friendly rivals in a very competitive tough slug-it-out industry. The complexity of chip design and the challenges of fine-tuning the design tools calls for cool decisions, even when it brings in the lawyers to uphold what you consider your IP crown jewels. If DeGeus is sometimes characterized as the renaissance man, Madhavan could be labeled as the opportunist. When I was covering the design world I sat to the table with both, individually. Both impressed me as CEOs I would respect.
ATarraaque72- Sure, any company is for sale in a free market. But I am not sure I understand the relevance. I am fairly certain that Rajeev and anyone else who had stake in Magma were very happy with the outcome here. For reasons stated by Neo1 and others above, acquisition is the only realistic best case scenario for an EDA company outside of "the big three."
If your company is public than anybody with enough $cash can buy it, even one mad Arab Sheikh can put the dollars on table and turn Synopsys into Oil company.
So may be the solution is not being presented on Nasdaq???!!
If you look at the way Rajeev ran Magma, there's little chance any other EDA company will be inviting him. Sure he was liked by the customers for that very reason...cheap licensing and "tweakability" for those who felt "EDA tools providing out-of-the-box solution" is a myth.
Magma was eyed by Mentor many years back when they were still a fledgeling but they for some reason decided otherwise.
Is there room particularly for startup EDA companies thriving and growing with these 3 big bears around? I guess their business model is kind of ancient which doesnt leave them much room to do sometihng big. They have unwittingly tied themselves to a rock which keeps them safe but they go no further.
Update- I just spoke with Aart de Geus and will be updating this story to reflect his comments. But the gist of it is:
1) Madhavan did not sign a non-compete agreement, after all. According to de Geus, there is no need for one. "Good executives don't sell a company and then immediately do something that would be a negative to that company." Translation, having sold his company, Madhavan is not going to go out and try to compete with what de Geus called "his family." De Geus also suggested, as I did above, that Madhavan's next venture might well be something outside of EDA.
2) De Geus also said that, contrary to popular belief, there is no ill will between he and Rajeev. He characterized their relationship as collegial. "We were competitors, but that doesn't mean that competitors can't have a high degree of mutual respect for one another." De Geus also praised Madhavan's handling of the situation since the announcement of that definitive agreement that Synopsys would acquire Magma.
A lot of people will probably characterize these comments as de Geus putting a nice spin on the relationship between the two men, but my honest opinion is that de Geus was speaking openly and honestly. He could have simply answered my questions about the non compete agreement and said nothing more, but he seemed bothered by the way the relationship between he and Madhavan is often characterized. Just my two cents...take it for what it's worth.
As we unveil EE Times’ 2015 Silicon 60 list, journalist & Silicon 60 researcher Peter Clarke hosts a conversation on startups in the electronics industry. Panelists Dan Armbrust (investment firm Silicon Catalyst), Andrew Kau (venture capital firm Walden International), and Stan Boland (successful serial entrepreneur, former CEO of Neul, Icera) join in the live debate.