Published in Graphics

AMD hires ex-Nvidia man + 1 to replace Raja Koduri

by on24 January 2018

Rayfield runs the RTG, David Wang engineering

Before anyone jumps the gun claiming that Mike Rayfield, the newly promoted Senior Vice President and General Manager of AMD Radeon Technologies Group (RTG) is ex Micron, we wanted to point out that he used to run Tegra for Nvidia before. The man who will replace Raja Koduri’s engineering talents comes from ATI and Synaptics. David Wang is now Senior Vice President of Engineering at RTG.

So, as Fudzilla initially posted a few weeks back, Raja's replacement was broken into two jobs and both of them came from the outside. It is interesting that Lisa didn’t dare to dissolve the RTG name, as the brand became quite famous to graphic lovers.

Mike Rayfield used to run the mobile business unit that created Tegra, and most recently he served as a senior vice president and general manager of the Mobile Business Unit at Micron. He managed to grow that business too. Rayfield will work closely with another ex-Nvidian, Scott Herkelmann, the chap who runs the Radeon gaming business unit. They will target Jeff Fisher’s Geforce team, which is not an easy task as proven by history but it will help that both men know the enemy. Just to make clear, Mike Rayfield is responsible for all aspects of strategy and business management for AMD consumer graphics, professional graphics, and semi-custom products. This is business part of Raja's prevous job. 

David Wang takes over Raja’s engineering responsibilities and I must admit I never had a chance to meet this chap. His last work address was Rick Bergman’s Synaptics where he worked as a senior vice president of Systems Silicon Engineering, responsible for the silicon systems development of Synaptics products. Rick Bergman, Synaptic’s CEO and Godfrey Chang, VP of Marketing, are both ex-ATI and ex-AMD guys. We know them very well and Bergman managed to grow Synaptics significantly since he left AMD and joined the company.

Prior to joining Synaptics, Wang was corporate vice president at AMD responsible for SOC development of AMD processor products, including GPUs, CPUs, and APUs. Previously, Wang held various technical and management positions at ATI, ArtX, SGI, Axil Workstations, and LSI Logic.

There is a pattern here that we need to point out. Ex-ArtX guys, the core and essence of ATI's success did really well over the last few decades. Dave Orton, the previous CEO of ATI definitely knew how to pick them. Yours truly hopes to have a chat with Wang at his earliest convenience but you need to be aware that it will take years before his real work shows up on AMD’s products. Vega 7 nm and Navi 7nm were well under way before Raja left and you can call them his babies. Wang still needs to make sure that the engineers stay on track. Since Raja left, Fudzilla talked to dozens of people and most of his close co-workers use words including "devastated" to describe how they were feeling when Raja left.

AMD President and CEO Dr. Lisa Su said: "Mike and David are industry leaders who bring proven track records of delivering profitable business growth and leadership product roadmaps. We enter 2018 with incredible momentum for our graphics business based on the full set of GPU products we introduced last year for the consumer, professional, and machine learning markets. Under Mike and David's leadership, I am confident we will continue to grow the footprint of Radeon across the gaming, immersive, and GPU compute markets."

Last modified on 24 January 2018
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