Most Valuable CEO #9 – Lothar Maier

Lothar Maier, Linear Tehcnology
#9 Lothar Maier


Linear Technology

Linear focuses on designing and manufacturing high-performance, long-lasting analog semiconductor chips, like amplifiers, voltage regulators and data converters, some of which are radiation hardened. They are used in telecommunications, automotive, industrial, military and aerospace applications.

Linear’s wealth-creation ranking stems from astute decisions about where to play in the semiconductor industry and from recognizing the importance of retaining its hard-to-come-by design talent. Linear will play where its chips comprise only a small part of total end-product price and are chosen based on performance, rather than price. Its where-to-play decisions also include assessing whether a chip it spends considerable resources to design will evolve rapidly (necessitating redesign) or will require state-of-the-art (expensive) fabrication lines.

Finally, Linear only competes where it can earn a strong return on investment. That said, its tendency not to bend on price does at times cause the loss of a promising high-volume opportunity, or a relationship that can lead to one.

Score 2010 Score % Change In Score Market Value/Invested Capital Three-Year EM EM Change Mgmt Quality
92.8 72.4 28.0% A A A A

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