Scenes from the Qualcomm Shareholder Meeting: Five Years Under New Management

The Qualcomm shareholder meeting was something of a five-year anniversary yesterday for Paul Jacobs, who was named to succeed his father, Irwin M. Jacobs, as CEO of the world’s largest provider of wireless chipsets and software technology in March 2005.

As milestones go, 2010 was a great year for Qualcomm, which had a record-setting year in the chip business, with about 400 million MSM chips shipped for 3G devices in 2010. That means Qualcomm delivered 30 percent compound annual growth in chipset revenue from 2003 through 2010. Paul Jacobs gave a comprehensive and upbeat overview of the company’s technology development and business performance, and he  emphasized the highlights in a presentation about Qualcomm’s performance since he took over with a new management team:

—3G mobile subscriptions (which rely heavily on Qualcomm technology) have increased 380 percent, to about 1.2 billion.

—Qualcomm’s market valuation has increased 73 percent, to about $95 billion.

—Annual revenue increased by 140 to 150 percent, to an estimated range between $13.6 billion and $14.2 billion in fiscal 2011.

—Annual earnings increased by 84 to 95 percent, to an estimated range between $2.3 billion and $2.46 billion in fiscal 2011.

—Available cash increased by 143 percent, to $19.1 billion.

“It’s nice to have that kind of cushion,” he said, referring to the $19.1 billion. “We all remember the early days of Qualcomm when things really were hand-to-mouth.”

One of the most interesting moments, though, came when a shareholder asked if it was just a coincidence that rival Broadcom (NASDAQ: BRCM) filed its multi-million-dollar patent and anti-trust lawsuits just as Paul Jacobs took over as CEO.

“I’m not sure it was a coincidence,” he responded. “I think they saw … Next Page »

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Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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