Raja Koduri – largely responsible for Intel’s re-entry into the GPU market – is leaving the company. In addition, the foundry business has a new boss.
Two big names are leaving Intel by the end of March 2023: Raja Koduri and Randhir Thakur. Koduri played a key role in building up the GPU division around the Arc graphics cards and data center accelerators such as Ponte Vecchio, but recently had to give up the lead again. Intel founded its Foundry Services under Thakur’s direction.
In 2017, Koduri had switched from AMD to Intel. At AMD he was already responsible for GPU development – he was still present at the time of the mixed Vega graphics cards, the development of RDNA should have started under him. At Intel, Koduri started as chief architect and was later promoted to lead its new Accelerated Computing Systems and Graphics (AXG) division, with the appointment of executive vide president.
After long delays in GPU products and a poor start to Arc graphics cards, Intel recently demoted Koduri back to chief architect. Now he is leaving the company and founding his own start-up focusing on the development of AI software for the areas of gaming, media and entertainment.
Intel Foundry Services as a separate company
Thakur’s exit had been planned for several months. Under him, the Intel Foundry Services (IFS) were created, which his successor Stuart Pann is now supposed to advance. He is also joining the management floor as Senior Vice President.
According to the announcement, Pann is to modernize the internal structures as a first major step by practically splitting off IFS as an independent company. In the future, Intel is to be treated like an (important) IFS customer who orders its processors and graphics chips from IFS for production. This is how Samsung handles it, for example, whose custom chip manufacturing is a separate company (Samsung Foundry).
Intel started the process years ago when, in the course of the 10-nanometer delays, it was decided that new CPU architectures should be developed separately from the manufacturing processes. In the meantime, the company is increasingly buying production quotas from the world market leader TSMC.