Qualcomm is in the vortex of a high stakes technology battle.
The giant semiconductor company is fighting off a $130 billion hostile takeover offer from rival Broadcom. It’s battling a big lawsuit from Apple over licensing fees and royalties. And it’s also waiting for regulators to okay Qualcomm’s $47 billion deal to buy NXP Semiconductor.
At the center of all this is Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf. A 20-year veteran of the company with two engineering degrees, he is committed to leading the development of 5G which promises to power the next wave of tech innovations.
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Speaking with Fortune ahead of the Broadcom news, Mollenkopf talks about his leadership style and why he’s optimistic about integrating NXP Semiconductor with Qualcomm.
“Well, you know it’s interesting, the chemistry between the two teams is actually quite good,” he says. “I have a very good sense of how these teams are going to work together because we’ve spent about the last year planning a lot of activities and I think we feel pretty good at about how that’s going to come together.”
Above all, Mollenkopf wants the Qualcomm and NXP combination to focus on developing new technology and products “in a disciplined way.” As the son of schoolteachers, Mollenkopf was taught early on about the importance of discipline and diligence.
“I think a lot of the job of the CEO is to make sure that you’re positioned well a number of years out in time,” Mollenkopf says, explaining that sometimes he’s making bets for eight years into the future. “That’s what you have to make sure that people understand. That it’s unacceptable for people to be late to these things and we want to make sure that we do it.”
Watch the video above for more on our conversation with Mollenkopf.