Saturday, October 09, 2004

Interview With Dimitri Desmons of Impinj

Earlier this week I had the opportunity to speak with Dimitri Desmons who is the product line director for RFID products at Impinj. Here is the Interview.

SJ=Semiconductor Jobs
DD=Dimitri Desmons

SJ: What is your position with Impinj and how long have you been with the company?

DD: I am a product line director for RFID products, and I have been with Impinj for just over 2 years.

SJ: What did you like about the company when you joined and what was the motivating factor?

DD: The company was very attractive. It was a start-up company, and it appeared to be a very different kind of company. At the time, I was looking for a new job and interviewed with several start-ups. Impinj was alone, ahead of the pack, with a strong technology, and a strong body of expertise, which seemed to translate into a strong competitive advantage. In comparison to a lot of start-ups, which all claimed to be king of the markets, Impinj had a very strong technological background, which is well rooted in strong and fundamental patents, which is unique.

SJ: How does RFID fit into the semiconductor industry?

DD: The core of an RFID tag is a chip, so the chip is the main component of the system. You could say it is one of the smallest systems-on- a-chip that you can think of. There is the antenna and the chip, and the chip does everything. RFID is very much a re-emerging market. In the past, its two main problems were the lack of standards and the fact that the technology was not good enough to give products that were both very low cost and very highly performing. Those things have changed in the last couple of years.

SJ: What is the business opportunity for Impinj and its technology?

DD: In terms of what?

SJ: if you look at Impinj 2 or 5 years down the road

DD: Well, you are looking at a market which has gone from almost nothing a few years ago to a several billion dollar of opportunity market wise for the semiconductor component of it. So there is plenty of room to grow, and our mission is to become a public company focused on RFID.

SJ: Do you feel that Impinj has a competitive advantage over its competition?

DD: Impinj’s secret sauce (Self-Adaptive Silicon technology) is applicable in RFID in more than one way. One, it gives us very good memory technology in the standard CMOS process, which is a strong competitive advantage cost wise, and low cost is an advantage in this market. Also the same technology applied differently gives us analog and RF circuits, which perform very well using very low-power consumption.

SJ: I understand that your group is looking for an applications engineer

DD: That is correct.

SJ: What are the 3 most important things that a potential candidate should think about when considering your company. In other words, what could you say that would motivate someone who is not really looking to make a move but would read this interview and want to join Impinj?

DD: Joining a leading start-up company in the biggest emerging market there is now. As 802.11 is becoming a mature market, RFID is the next big thing. It is going to go very fast. Unlike 802.11 at the start, there is a very strong customer pull for RFID solutions. This market is there because Wal-Mart said we are going to start implementing this starting January. This is an opportunity to work with a very strong team. Less than a year and a half ago, we started RFID, and we have the best chip on the market.

SJ: There was a company that used our site temporarily called Intelliflex are you familiar with them?

DD: Yes

SJ: What would you say are the main differences between the two companies?

DD: Impinj was established 4 years ago, Intelliflex a few months ago. They focus on the active tag market, while our focus is on the much larger passive tag market (we will address active tags at a later date). I do not know what technological advantages they might have.

SJ: Have you interviewed anyone yet for the applications position?

DD: Yes

SJ: What would you say the biggest negatives were?

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Candidates who are interested in the RF/Wireless Applications Engineer position should apply online at http://www.impinj.com/ for the most immediate consideration.

Impinj Website
Impinj Jobs
Impinj Blog

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