About Dirk Behrens

After his PhD in Electrical Engineering in 1997 at the Leibniz-University of Hannover, Germany, Dirk started in the R&D department of a large German semiconductor company where he drove the development of a new electronic design automation (EDA) flow for semicustom integrated circuits (ICs). In September 1997 he moved to Silicon Valley, US, to become one of the main team members developing the 32-bit TriCore microcontroller/DSP architecture - nowadays to be found in many engine control and safety application in automobiles of known brands like Mercedes, BMW or Volkswagen. He worked further in a Silicon Valley startup company on communication and networking technologies, bringing the world first 24+2 Gigabit IP/Ethernet switch IC as well as the first 10G switch fabric IC into the market and drove the penetration of IP/Ethernet in wired and wireless networks, by defining and developing different network processors for DSL/DSLAMs and 3G/4G base stations, bridging between the old ATM, cell based, and the new IP/Ethernet packaged based network technologies. Through all of these years Dirk has worked managed several international and distributed teams, coordinated between headquarter and remote satellites and bridged intercultural differences between team members and between different sites.

After his repatriation in 2003 Dirk took over responsibility for overall strategy and marketing of a large German Automotive supplier, addressing the whole portfolio of Automotive ECUs with sensors, microcontroller and power ICs. During this time he developed a new business area around Automotive driver assistant systems (ADAS) especially a 79GHz radar business as well as gave start to an Automotive communication business bringing telematics with GPS, 2G/3G as well as Bluetooth ands WLAN into the driver cabin. From 2005 on Dirk lead the EMEA Organisation of a large Canadian semiconductor company, dealing with 2D3D graphics. In this time he also supervised the first steps into the GPU processing market, which led into todays AI processes including deep learning and big data processing. After this assignment Dirk led the marketing for a small company in Dresden, developing sensors and communication ICs for Automotive and Industrial, which has then been sold to a large US-based semiconductor company. As consultant he helped several startup companies to build their business plan, to get funded, to win their first lead customers as well as to setup their own production lines.

From 2012 to 2016 Dirk led the 140M€ Automotive business of another small semiconductor company, dealing with magnetic sensors and motor control ICs for Automotive, which then as well has been sold to a large Japan-based enterprise. During this time Dirk has build up its business in Japan and Europe, shortened R&D development cycles and implemented several cost-down measures in R&D and production to improve margin.