DECISIONS: Hermann Hauser, Amadeus Capital Partners

DECISIONS: Hermann Hauser, Amadeus Capital Partners - MY BEST ... 'Spinning the chip-making division out of Acorn to form ARM in 1990. I decided that, as a chip producer, it had to be independent to succeed. Its customers (mainly PC manufacturers at the t

by ANDREW SAUNDERS
Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

MY BEST ... 'Spinning the chip-making division out of Acorn to form ARM in 1990. I decided that, as a chip producer, it had to be independent to succeed. Its customers (mainly PC manufacturers at the time) wanted the latest processors, which they weren't going to buy from a competitor like Acorn for fear of getting second best. I was right. ARM is now worth dollars 10 billion, and all the big chip manufacturers are independent. But we might never have designed our own chip. Back in the mid-80s, when we wanted to use Intel's 286 processor, they sent us packing so we had to do it ourselves. Now ARM is licensing descendants of that first chip back to Intel.'

MY WORST ...

'A company called Net Products, which provided internet access through a set-top box, cost me about pounds 2 million a couple of years ago. The box was a nice product and only cost pounds 199 but it didn't sell. People just weren't that interested in the net at the time. I was also slow to realise the importance of standardisation. In the BBC micro we had arguably the best computer at the time - it was the first with networking capability built in. If I had worked harder on partnerships and licensing agreements the world might now be Acorn compatible.'

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