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EETE JULAUG 2014

Rousset judgment is economic and social mistake By Peter Clarke Philipe lambinet, director at General Vision Inc. and leader of the NeuroMem Semiconductor project there, asks: “Where is the France that created the smart-card industry?” It is not in evidence in a decision that has sold the chip manufacturing heritage of Rousset to a would-be Brazilian wafer fab. Below are his comments on the whole LFoundry Rousset saga. EE Times Europe is correct in its report about the LFoundry Rousset liquidation when it says that the bid from SIX Semiconductores was €18 million and that from General Vision was €9.5 million. However, with all bids except ours the site will stop being a semiconductor fab and therefore the land, building and remaining piping will need to be decontaminated. The cost of this decontamination will be €24 million, according to the liquidator. SIX, as they will not operate the site, will not take care of this cost. Because our bid was a continuation of a wafer manufacturing operation, no decontamination was necessary. So, this €24 million cost of decontamination should be subtracted from the €18 million bid. In addition, we would have saved a lot of money for the French social system. If we add the social contributions, paid by the employers, which we will not pay and the unemployment benefits “No matter how you look at it, this decision from the Tribunal de Commerce is a bad the workers will get, we estimated that this tragic end will cost about €12 million over two years to the French social system. This amount should also be subtracted from the €18 million bid from SIX. So, if you want to make a fair comparison you should really compare €18 million against 9.5+24+12 = €45.5 million. This judgement is not only an industrial and social disaster. It is also a disaster from a pure economic point of view. No matter how you look at it, this decision from the Tribunal de Commerce is a bad decision. It is also a missed opportunity to have France and Europe play a leading role in the emergence of neuromorphic computing, which is, as IBM’s CEO repeatedly said, the next big thing in computing. decision. France was smart enough to leverage the patents of Mr Moreno in the 1980s and create the smart-card industry, which created tens of thousands of jobs in France. Unfortunately, France was not smart enough this time to do the same with the patents of two other French people: Guy Paillet and Anne Menendez (of General Vision). It’s a real shame for the French and European high-tech industry. Philippe Lambinet is Director of General Vision - http://general-vision.com Publisher André Rousselot +32 27400053 andre.rousselot@eetimes.be Editor-in-Chief Julien Happich +33 169819476 julien.happich@eetimes.be EDITORS Nick Flaherty +44 7710236368 nick.flaherty@eetimes.be Christoph Hammerschmidt +49 8944450209 chammerschmidt@gmx.net Peter Clarke +44 776 786 55 93 peter.clarke@eetimes.be Paul Buckley +44 1962866460 paul@activewords.co.uk Jean-Pierre Joosting +44 7800548133 jean-pierre.joosting@eetimes.be Circulation & Finance Luc Desimpel luc.desimpel@eetimes.be Advertising Production & Reprints Lydia Gijsegom lydia.gijsegom@eetimes.be Art Manager Jean-Paul Speliers Acounting Ricardo Pinto Ferreira Regional Advertising Representatives Contact information at: http://www.electronics-eetimes.com/en/ about/sales-contacts.html European Business Press SA 7 Avenue Reine Astrid 1310 La Hulpe Tel: +32 (0)2 740 00 50 european Fax: +32 (0)2 740 00 59 business press www.electronics-eetimes.com VAT Registration: BE 461.357.437 RPM: Brussels Company Number: 0461357437 © 2014 E.B.P. SA ELECTRONIC ENGINERING TIMES EUROPE is published 11 times in 2014 by European Business Press SA, 7 Avenue Reine Astrid, 1310 La Hulpe, Belgium Tel: +32-2-740 00 50 Fax: +32-2-740 00 59 email: info@eetimes.be. VAT Registration: BE 461.357.437. RPM: Nivelles. Volume 16, Issue 7 E Times P 304128 It is is free to qualified engineers and managers involved in engineering decisions – see: http://www.electronics-eetimes.com/subscribe Copyright 2014 by European Business Press SA. All rights reserved. P 304128 50 Electronic Engineering Times Europe July/August 2014 www.electronics-eetimes.com


EETE JULAUG 2014
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