Nice article. As for having an American CEO in Japan, look at Sony! Not a pretty picture right now. The 20-20 vision in the comments about Akao's performance don't reflect the problems in any merger, particularly with such disparate lines.
From my observations, it appears that Renesas may not have a disciplined pricing strategy.
For example, as a result of all mergers Renesas has about a dozen different microcontroller architectures. Each MCU family is afraid of being obsoleted so it appears that MCU groups are pricing business at a loss - in many cases they may be competing against other Renesas MCUs!
It could be that the more they sell, the more they lose, so being #1 could drive them out of business.
Are you for real? If Akao was the proponent of fab-lite, explain why he has not shut down any of more than 20 factories. It was the pressure from HMN. Do you even know what NEC executives told Akao? They told Akao to be more responsible. Akao was busy solidifying his position while forgetting that he needs to make a bottom line commitment to parent companies and the banks. Stop being so prejudicial to favor Akao.
Your shortsightedness amazes me. Do you want to catch a huge falling knife? Being #1 MCU vendor does not mean much, when the profitability for MCU is very small. Let me ask you this then, how do you explain being #1 and losing so much money. Their market share is eroding faster than ever.
It is simple. Akao and them are so stupid that KKR feels that anyone can turn the company around. HMN think so. Watch HMN and the main banks welcome KKR with an open arm.
If anything, Akao should be fired immediately. Before the merge two years ago, Renesas and NEC each has at least 3 micro-controller architectures developed in-house in the past. A year and a half later, they virtually kept all those, plus the ARM-based micro-controller which the internal management kept refusing to fully embrace (reason was obvious).
Many engineers and marketing people easily associate Infineon as significant players of discretes and analog products. How many engineers equate Renesas to well-known analog products? Does Renesas sell A/DC, power amplifier, buck converters, amplifier, LDO, ...? How many popular analog products does Renesas sell? Akao and a bunch of walllies inside Renesas are still in the mode of denials and refuse to do the right things quick!
Thanks for your detailed analysis here. I appreciate it. For many things you said above, I actually do agree with you.
Just to set the record straight, though, I actually don't care whether a Japanese company goes into American hands. That's not the point.
But I did feel the pain of letting go of the company which you had thought you could restore.
My objective in writing this story was to report what Mr. Akao had to say on Wednesday, Aug. 29th, 2013.
I am setting aside to do my own opinion and anaysis piece at another time.
But, Kobayashi-san, you are right. I am a softy. This was a bitter sweet interview.
What a lecture this article is!
I didn't know about Renesas boat going through harsh waters. What happened?! They were the number one MCU vendors out there! Engineers and not managers in the top team?!
Fab-lite?! What is fab-lite?! Interesting! Will keep an eye in this boat.
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