Industrial electronics, requiring high-voltage controllers, now account for $600 million of Maxim’s revenue. The projected market growth is 7% CAGR—from $8.4 billion in 2015 to $10.4 billion in 2018—with factory automation serving as the largest industrial market segment, and its fastest growing. Maxim makes parts for Programmable Logic controllers (PLCs), including pulse width modulators for motor drive, precision op amps, and the ever popular RS232 interface transceivers. Servicing the industrial market also requires the company to make its high-end products more accessible to smaller industrial customers. And this signifies a greater role for Maxim’s distributors, primarily Avnet.
In data center power management, the enterprise computing segment did not grow as rapidly as hoped for in 2015. But Maxim is satisfied with the positon it has in data center power management. The server power management ICs (multi-phase power controllers), acquired with Volterra, supports 20% greater power densities. The efficiency improvements provide aggregate savings in millions of dollars.
Maxim sees mobility and wearables as a $12 billion opportunity. The CAGR for wearables – consumers of power managers, audio decoders and amplifiers—is 30%; reaching 380 million units in 2018. These include part for smart watches, health monitoring, and fitness devices.
Under mobility, Maxim showcased its expertise in mobile power management ICs, including the highly-integrated PMIC devices that control mobile handsets. It turns out the small size and low power consumption of PMICs are welcome in automotive consoles. A Maxim PMIC currently supports NVidia’s processor and display controller for automotive consoles. The PMIC integrates as many as 14 separate power management functions. Automotive console makers appreciate the small package size enabled by integration, but also the low power consumption—2µA at standby—as this supports an “always on” capability for automotive systems.
While Tunç Doluca did not mention the company’s name – referring instead to "our largest customer" – Maxim’s business with