Double top for Lucent as GSM grows 30%

Double top for Lucent as GSM grows 30%
Lucent Microelectronics forced to move premises as headcount doubles and still rising… David Manners. Lucent Microelectronics is following the Moore’s Law rule of doubling every eighteen months – not only in transistors but in people. The growth is forcing the company to move to new UK premises in Ascot. “We expected the Bracknell offices (where Lucent moved over two years ago) to last us until 2000,” John Hughes, European boss of Lucent told EW. “We’re already bursting at the seams. We doubled headcount in the last eighteen months and in the next 18/24 months will increase it by another two thirds.” The reason is the 30 per cent annual growth of the GSM market. “The company has decided to do its GSM product development in Europe,” said Hughes. “The core DSP technology and the RF are done in the US, but the design of products aimed at the GSM terminals market is being done in Europe.” Lucent expects the GSM terminal market to double from its current 40 to 50 million units a year to 100 million in 2001. It does not see CDMA affecting GSM growth. “Wideband CDMA development is mostly happening in Japan,” said Hughes. “We think it will happen there first, then there’ll be a convergence between GSM and CDMA, and then UMTS in 2002/3. We’re working on strategies that will help us converge products on UMTS.” Lucent currently has over 20 vacancies. They are, says Hughes: “For design engineers, for people who understand the tools, for applications people to assist customers, and for software developers.” He’s finding recruitment relatively easy, he says: “We have a reputation for doing innovative work which attracts engineering talent.” Nonetheless, insiders say that the Bracknell offices have signs up offering a ‘bounty’ of $5,000 to every member of staff who recruits an engineer.


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