Magma Design Automation has some hot design tips for chip engineers. The company provides electronic design automation (EDA) software used by engineers designing integrated circuits for electronic products such as cell phones, Wi-Fi, digital video, and networking. Its Talus software products combine front- and back-end design processes into a single, integrated workflow, while its Quartz applications tackle sign-off and verification tasks. Customers have included Texas Instruments, NEC, Qualcomm, and Samsung. The company also offers related services such as consulting, training, and maintenance. It gets about 60% of sales from North America. In 2012 Magma was acquired by key competitor Synopsys.
A major marketing point for the company's software products is that they combine what are traditionally separate steps in the chip design process into one integrated workflow that encompasses logic design, physical design, analysis, and sign-off processes. Magma believes this reduces design iterations for its customers, which in turn saves them valuable time when designing and producing new chips. The company also claims to be the first EDA firm to develop a product that combines analog and digital design into a single platform. Its Titan Mixed-Signal Design Platform integrates analog as well as digital implementation and verification processes with mixed-signal designs.
Now a subsidiary of former key competitor Synopsys, the company can better compete with its remaining major rivals, such as Cadence Design, which offers integrated design products similar to Magma's. Mentor Graphics is the other top competitor the company faces. Magma at one pointed threatened to break into the top three of the EDA industry by revenue but sales have slowed in recent years.
In 2009 Magma restructured its debt, closed facilities, and reduced its workforce by about 30% in an attempt to improve its bottom line. The cost cutting worked, as Magma trimmed its net loss to $3.3 million in 2010 from a loss of $129.2 million for 2009. During the same period, Magma's sales fell by 16%; it was still a vast improvement over 2009 when sales were down by about 30%. Sales continued to improve slowly in fiscal 2011 ($139.3 million compared to $123.1 million) but costs associated with debt kept the company at a $3.3 million net loss.
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