"Teledyne recognizes the importance of mastering supply chain and manufacturing when it comes to serving demanding professional markets with the latest technologies. As such, the manufacturing capability out of Grenoble is a perfect fit."
Could you outline how Teledyne e2v and specifically the Grenoble site fit into the global company strategy?
Teledyne corporation has a current revenue of US$2.6 billion, which is split among four segments: instrumentation represents 35%, digital imaging 29%, aerospace and defence electronics 25%, and engineered systems 11%.
Teledyne strategy is about bringing enabling technologies to professional growth markets.
As such, the Teledyne e2v Grenoble acquisition by Teledyne has contributed into enlarging the corporation portfolio of technologies in a complementary manner, as well as enabling Teledyne to continue to increase its footprint outside the USA in order to be a truly global player.
Last but not least, Teledyne recognizes the importance of mastering supply chain and manufacturing when it comes to serving demanding professional markets with the latest technologies. As such, the manufacturing capability out of Grenoble is a perfect fit.
How does Teledyne e2v differentiate itself in the aerospace and defence market?
We are the only semi-conductor company in Europe EN9100 certified for aerospace and defence, and Sensitron in the USA is the only other company in the world also certified. The certification acts as a point of differentiation and has a positive effect for our business, especially in the aircraft industry. Our market share is primarily the United States representing over 50% of our business from Grenoble, Europe comes second and Asia third.
Our products play a key role in differentiation as well. Our biggest line is the microprocessors, and we supply for a variety of aerospace and defence electronically controlled systems, including flight computers on the majority of global aircraft and engine controls. Within the heart of the systems or engine controls, there is always an embedded computer with a microprocessor that we supply to aerospace and defence standards with specific reliability requirements that the regular commercial manufacturers would not provide.
What are the latest innovations coming from the Grenoble product lines?
For the microprocessors line we work with a major US manufacturer, NXP, whose products we qualify to aerospace and defence standards, bringing added value by adjusting the level of reliability for each product application case by case. The Qormino® family is our latest innovation in computing modules, integrating processors with 4GB memory, which saves precious engineering hours and risks for our customers: they can focus on engineering differentiators for their customers and ultimately significantly reduce time to market.
A second product line from Grenoble is our data converters that we design in house and which operate at extreme microwave signal frequencies. The main value for our customers is that we push the digital boundary much closer to the antenna on any RF system, digitizing more radar and telecommunication systems. This business has collected a number of world firsts since 22 years in data conversion technology, the latest one being an unprecedented digital to analog converter operating in K-band frequencies; this is known as the EV12DS4xx series.
The Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region has programs to unite the private sector with qualified talent at universities to meet industry needs. How has this impacted Teledyne’s business?
Signal processing has an academic history here with French mathematician Joseph Fourier, after whom the Grenoble University of Science was originally named. There used to be a disconnect between industry and the academic world but this gap has narrowed significantly in recent years locally.
We are very happy with the stream of talent coming out of the local universities; they are very good engineers who contribute to our differentiation.
We can see other regions where our competition struggles to find that level of talent locally compared to what we can do, so the programs are a bonus to being in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region.
As a large player in the region, how do you see the market structure developing in the coming years, and what are Teledyne e2v’s growth plans?
We see at Cluster meetings that the primary aircraft manufacturers have high expectations for SMEs. They no longer wish to deal with numerous small entities and would rather see talented SMEs be acquired by a larger group, which is happening. We felt some of that pressure ourselves as a midcap when we were e2v and becoming a large cap, now part of Teledyne, has been received positively by customers to meet their growing demands. Our current growth plan is focused on differentiation and we may make further acquisitions when relevant to our strategy.