NEDA Names AMD 2002 Manufacturer of the Year for Active Components, Honors Jerry Sanders with Lifetime Achievement Award
Sanders speaks out: Free and open competition is key to fostering “True Innovation”
SUNNYVALE, CA --
The National Electronics Distributors Association (NEDA) has named AMD (NYSE: AMD) “Manufacturer of the Year” for 2002 in the active components category, making this the second time AMD has won this award. AMD is the only company to have won NEDA’s “Manufacturer of the Year” award more than once, having first won this category in 1991. NEDA also honored AMD Founder and Chairman Jerry Sanders with a lifetime achievement award. Sanders is just the fifth person in the 65-year history of NEDA to be so honored.
“To be singled out for excellence by our distributor partners is extremely gratifying,” said Sanders. “The fact that AMD is now the only company that NEDA has named ‘Manufacturer of the Year’ more than once is a testament to AMD’s unwavering focus on serving customers, which has always been a key AMD value. I’m also truly honored that NEDA has deemed my accomplishments worthy of a lifetime achievement award, and am in the company of prior lifetime achievement award honorees Tony Hamilton, Robert W. Galvin, Seymour Schweber and Gordon Marshall.”
In his keynote address to electronics distributors at NEDA’s “Survival
2002” Executive Conference held Tuesday, Sanders discussed the role of competition in business and asserted that “true innovation” – innovation which makes the greatest possible technology relevant and available to the widest possible audience – must be protected and allowed to thrive so that the global economy can grow.
“Just as true innovation flourishes when free and open competition exists, it suffers when free and open competition is squashed,” said Sanders. “Too many companies now innovate to perpetuate their business model, instead of addressing the needs of consumers. Every day we see new technologies that hold almost no relevance to people’s lives; new technologies that cost far too much to buy; new technologies that are too complicated to adopt successfully. Are these technologies truly innovative? No.”
Sanders pointed to true innovation based on a foundation of free and open competition as key factors which led to the rise of today’s $150 billion PC market. Also discussed as a proven driver of growth was the importance of innovation occurring within “inclusive” standards. “When IBM introduced its personal computer, their sale forecast was for 250,000 units over the life of the product,” said Sanders. “Today, worldwide PC sales are approaching 150 million units annually, generating more than $150 billion in annual revenue. Inclusive standards promote volume markets by attracting additional participants, all of which drives a critical learning curve and promotes continuous cost reductions. The PC took off because true innovation within standards put the demands of the customer ahead of the industry’s, and profits followed.”
Sanders did stress that standards must exist within a fine line. “While they have done more for the cause of free and open competition than perhaps any other phenomena, standards have also created a foundation that is easily abused. As a guideline moving forward, when you hear of a company promoting a standard, ask yourself this: is that standard exclusionary or inclusive? Does the standard invite other companies to participate, or is the standard confined to a company of one? The role of standards should be to serve as an open platform for broad participation.”
As the computing industry searches for ways to emerge from one of the most economically and politically complex periods in history, Sanders quoted early 20th century Austrian economist Joseph Schumpeter, saying, “’Growth will occur when the entrepreneur is given the opportunity to innovate and can participate in the fruits of his success.’ As we navigate one of the most economically and politically complex periods in our history, Schumpeter reminds us not to forget the core of what got us to where we are today: democratic capitalist structures are meant to protect the free-flow of ideas and the economic freedoms granted to the people who dare to bring those ideas alive. True innovation, built upon the foundation of free and open competition, serves as the guiding principle to secure our creative and economic freedoms for many years to come.”
Sanders’ presentation is available in AMD’s virtual pressroom at www.amd.com/virtualpress/speeches
AMD is a global supplier of integrated circuits for the personal and networked computer and communications markets with manufacturing facilities in the United States, Europe, Japan, and Asia. AMD, a Fortune 500 and Standard & Poor’s 500 company, produces microprocessors, Flash memory devices, and support circuitry for communications and networking applications. Founded in 1969 and based in Sunnyvale, California, AMD had revenues of $3.9 billion in 2001. (NYSE: AMD).
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