Insights into the Irish Semiconductors industry with John Ryan, VP Engineering at Powervation

The Irish Semiconductor industry is booming, with some great innovative products being built by home grown Irish companies. We spoke with  John Ryan, VP Engineering at Powervation, who are one of the Irish companies to watch in this sector to learn more about his insights and observations in this sector. Powervation are one of many companies who have succesfully worked with Software Placements to find the right candidates to help grow their businesses, and have now been acquired by ROHM Semi Conductors, to see more about them see here. Below is our conversation with John about all things related to Ireland and semi conductors.

If you’d like us to help you to find and recruit the best possible candidates for your Semiconductor business do drop us a line and we’d be more than happy to help you to get the right people for your roles.  Contact MICHÉAL Ó MAOLDOMHNAIGH, Co-Director, of Software Placements, phone: 00353 1 5254642 for more details. You can also read more about the Irish semiconductor industry and why it is booming here,

And now to our featured interviewee, John Ryan, VP for Engineering at Powervation…

What does Ireland do well in the semiconductors sector and why is Ireland achieving good results in this area?

Ireland has a relatively small FDI sector in Semiconductors.  Some have been here for many years and are well embedded.  (ADI and Intel both have manufacturing and design operations here).  Others are fabless and are not as tightly coupled to Ireland. We have had many examples of these, Freescale is a good fairly recent example.   The closure of these operations has in fact often produced startups that have flourished and provided more employment and significant capital appreciation for investors and employees alike.   We have a good track record with these startups. Some recent examples include Movidius (bought by Intel in 2016),  Glonav (bought by NXP)

What industries are you building products for?

Servers and memory. To see more please see here for news about our acquisition by Rohm Semiconductor.

What trends in semi conductors are you excited by. and what might we see in the next few years?

I am too long in the business to be excited by it anymore. It does never cease to surprise me though by its  innovation.  One of the most interesting applications now is machine vision as applied to driver less cars and or security systems.  This truly harnesses the compute power of the current generation of processors and fuses this with both new (lidar) and old (camera) technology.


What tips would you give to those looking to make a career in Semiconductors?

Study a generic engineering degree and avoid any of the supposedly specialised versions (Energy Engineering etc). Keep you technical skills current and make sure to learn something every day.

Anything else you’d like to add / we should have asked?

If you wish to find out any more about what we do you can find me, John Ryan, VP Engineering and Operations, ROHM Powervation Limited on LinkedIn

Powervation was a spin out from University of Limerick 2007
• Idea came from Ph.D Project
• University funded initial IP development.
• Patents filed.
• 3 UL Researchers “spunout
• Startup CEO Hired
• Angel funding raised Company Incorporated
• UL developed IP bought out 2007 with success fee on exit.

Ireland, a great place for companies in the Semiconductor sector, drop us a line for your recruiting needs

Ireland has and still maintains a cutting edge when it comes to the Semiconductor industry. For this reason Software Placements is very focused on ensuring that we play our part in helping to recruit the best and the most able candidates to help ensure these companies continue to excel and produce more great products in the future. Please drop us a line if you are looking to recruit new staff for your Semiconductor business. If you are looking for a job sign up for alerts and updates for new Semiconductor positions as they arise.

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