Good to see you back, Jacques.
Good to see Jacques Noels back on the European high-tech scene. As CEO of Thomson Semiconducteurs, Noels was one of the most high profile European technology CEOs during the 1980s,
It was debatable whether Pasquale Pistorio or Noels would run the joint company, but Pistorio was the more experienced CEO and he took over.. Noels went on the board of Nokia for three years, then went off to California for 11 years at Zenith Data Systems and HP and at a couple of Californian VC funds. “That’s when I got the virus for entrepreneurship”, says Noels who came back to Europe in 2004, and was asked by an investor fund to look into one of their investments which was the e-paper display company Nemoptic. In April 2005, he became CEO of Nemoptic, and spent a couple of years productising its technology. Last week he announced a deal with Seiko for mass production. I will always remember Noels’ stiff upper lip at an AFDEC dinner, renowned, at the time, for their appalling food. Noels was the guest of honour at one and afterwards I asked him how he had enjoyed the meal. There was that flash of pain in the eyes when a Frenchman recalls a dreadful culinary experience. But Noels rallied. “Very much,” he replied, with truly admirable sang froid.