Innovation Fueled By Cooperation : Meet Magillem, A Bold French CAD Software Editor Which Celebrates Its 10th Anniversary This Year
Isabelle Geday, Magillem’s CEO and Emmanuel Vaumorin, Magillem’s co-founder and delegate CEO, tell us about their company and the sofware products that they market, which enable smart and flawless cooperation across different functional teams in electronics and semiconductor industries.
Magillem features a double-digit growth, global locations generating 94% of its annual revenue, and a huge technology differentiator. What’s the recipe for its success?
Isabelle Geday: A unique vision combined with a listening attitude– we have learned our lessons through observing the way big electronics companies design their products, just like Hollywood studios or videogame firms : they deliver in agressive time-to-market expensive and complex blockbusters that are short-lived. Funding the development of such products is so expensive that a single failure can take companies out of the market. The challenge is therefore to find a way to maximize return on investment from knowledge acquisition.
Magillem’s product offer is focused on optimizing processes and tools to make knowledge assets valuable through saving time and fostering collaboration across teams. We’ve also been convinced since the beginning that XML would become a standard programming language to specify, develop and document software using a unique development framework. So it is both by observing what was going on in the industry and being convinced that XML would become super pervasive that we have managed to establish our footprint with 18 to 20 world leaders in microelectronics and semiconductor manufacturing.
Today we keep questioning our clients and partners about their needs in order to address better their requests for change and evolving business models.
How did Magillem start?
Emmanuel Vaumorin: Everything started with the encounter of five electronics engineers and a team of business angels. Since its creation in 2006, Magillem has delivered business solutions that leverage tremendously the design, analysis and management processes of complex, heterogeneous microelectronic systems.
We provide tools that both facilitate and automate workflows. For example, any change made by a given team will be propagated to files used by other teams without error. Thanks to smarter collaboration processes, we enable our customers to build error-free, consistent and more usable solutions.
In 2006 Magillem was a small startup. How did you manage to convince world leaders?
Isabelle Geday: Leaders in our industry are very open to cooperation with start-ups! And we have mixed three ingredients: a technology-savvy strategy, an unfailing dedication to our customers and competitive pricing. Our customers are demanding people who thrive in innovation. You know the expression : “ if you can’t run with the big dogs , stay under the porch”, we want to run with the champions.
Within Magillem, apprenticeship and remote work are extensively used. What are the benefits?
Isabelle Geday: In order to address effectively the technology challenges that we face we have designed a homemade training program that we deliver to future engineers through apprenticeship. This way we ensure that the young graduates that we hire match 100% of our technical expectations.
Remote work is an excellent solution to hire people with top skills. Today most of our R&D team members work remotely. They enjoy the flexibility and we have a low staff turnover rate. Everyone wins!
In 2016, Magillem celebrates its 10th anniversary. Have you changed your management style?
Isabelle Geday: We have reorganized and “liberated” the company in a way that makes it more agile and which stimulates creativity. With a flat hierarchy and emphasis on high personal responsibility we have created an amazing work environment characterized by trust, teamwork and open communication.
As a result people feel rewarded and our work processes are smoother. This change was required as we are convinced that people are our most valuable asset.
How about new trends in management of innovation?
Isabelle Geday: Our presence in technology consortiums, numerous partners and alliances, coupled with extensive linkage with universities, R&D labs and technology providers create a technology ecosystem that enables us to exist among big players.
What is your next challenge ?
Emmanuel Vaumorin: Today, microelectronics accounts for more than 60% of the R&D budget of big firms in the automotive, aerospace, defense and railway industries. In these sectors, firms have started developing their own platforms, particularly to address IoT challenges. These potential customers are our next target, so our objective is to expand our business in geographies like Germany or China. More generally, we plan to be anywhere in the world where high-potential firms need to maximize in the long-term the value of their business expertise.