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Qualcomm CEO: upgraded R&D in Israel to a major strategic center

The message from Paul Jacobs’s Israel visit is that Qualcomm’s is seeking Israel’s technology leaders and R&D center is being upgraded to a major strategic center.

Qualcomm Chairman and CEO    / Getty

Qualcomm Chairman and CEO Paul Jacobs / Getty

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/ By Shmulik Shelach /

Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) CEO Paul Jacobs, currently in Israel, spoke about the chipmaker’s strategy at a press conference today at Qualcomm Israel’s R&D center in Haifa. The message around the visit was the upgrading of importance of Qualcomm Israel’s R&D center to one of Qualcomm’s major strategic centers.
Jacobs said that the company had no clear plans to expand in the Israeli market and no specific areas in which the company wanted to expand into. He added, “We are growing in Israel in a very organic and pragmatic way. We have no organized plan on the scale of our operations here and we have not already decided what we want to do in Israel. We seek talents and leaders in the technology sector.”
During the visit to the R&D center, which was established 20 years ago, Jacobs announced top managerial changes in Israel. Ayal Bar-David who has served as general manager of Qualcomm Israel’s R&D center for the past 14 years has been promoted to VP global market development and will be responsible for strategic development in Israel and the region. He will be replaced by Marvell Israel’s Arik Mimran.
With a market cap of $114 billion and expected revenue of $25 billion in 2013, Qualcomm is the world’s third largest chipmaker after Intel and Samsung. The company was founded in 1985 by Andrew Viterbi and Irwin Jacobs (Paul’s father).
Qualcomm has made three acquisitions in Israel. The company acquired the assets of ultrasound technology developer EPOS for an undisclosed sum in November 2012, DesignArt, which develops chip platforms to boost wireless data capacity in mobile networks in August 2012 for $120 million and mobile infrastructure company iSkoot for $50-100 million in 2010. Qualcomm Israel today has around 400 employees.
In addition, Qualcomm’s venture capital arm Qualcomm Ventures has invested in various companies including a stake in popular navigation app Waze Ltd. Jacobs sidestepped questions about Facebook’s talks to acquire Waze, which were recently reported. He was also evasive about the company’s investment agenda saying only, “The vision is in the direction that the industry is heading.”
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